Part One | Strengths and Increments: Why Thinking Small is Key to Living Large

StillCalmLifeBeforeEDITFebruary 1, 2016

5 Ideas, 3 Questions, and an Action

Five Ideas

On average, we blink 12 times per minute and each blink lasts about 1/10th of a second. So, in a 16 hour day, we blink about 11,520 times. This equals 1,152 seconds, or 19.2 full minuets with our eyes closed each day.

Because each blink is so quick, we don’t notice it—we probably don’t miss out on anything in 1/10th of a second. But add this up over a year, and we find that we’ve got our eyes closed for 116.8 hours while we are wide awake!

That is to say that it really only feels significant when we add up all the little parts and look at them together.

Working toward our goals can feel this way; we put effort in day after day and it might not feel like much—but when we add each small effort together, we can see that inch by inch we’ve been pushing a boulder.

Devoting 5 minuets a day toward a goal adds up to 30.41 hours by the end of one year. That is the life-equivalent of blinking toward your target.

Three Questions

What is one specific goal that I have for my health?

What is one specific goal that I have for my mind?

What is one specific goal that I have for my finances?

(What is a five minuet action that I could take each day in any of these areas—jumping jacks, meditation, following a finance blog, etc.?)

An Action

Desired Result: Becoming Knowledgeable of a New Thing

Concrete Action: Devote 5 mins a day to learning about it. It can be anything—sloths, sunlight, fasting, knot-tying, Spanish, anything. Research it on the internet. Take down a few notes. Read an article, watch a five minute video, open a book. Just be consistent and do it everyday for one month. It doesn’t have to be super organized or methodical—just consistent. Do it every day for five minuets for one month. By the end of it, you will have spent 2.5 hours learning about a single subject. When is the last time you can say that you spent that much time digging into one new idea for the sake of pure learning?

Be your greatness. Start. Do. Go.

Circle Photo

Zach Carlsen is the grateful lead blogger at

His strengths of Ideation, Connectedness, Input, Strategic, and Empathy have taken him all over the world. He is an inventor, athlete, joyous wanderer/wonderer, translator, poet, and Strengths Consultant.

Connect with him:


Twitter: @zstrengthslife

Facebook: Zachary Carlsen


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