We often focus on the really big actions we take to achieve our dreams, but the path to manifesting your dreams and desires is most often paved in the small steps you take each day. Below, learn the importance of small steps, and discover how you can start taking daily steps rooted in aligned action to help you manifest your deepest, most heartfelt dreams.
Have you ever known someone who decided they wanted to lose weight and went all in right away?
From day one, they’re working out one to two hours every day and cutting their daily calorie intake in half. For the first couple weeks, they might see big results. They lose several pounds the first week, and then a few more the second.
But then, the drastic leap they’ve made starts to take its toll.
They begin to backslide, skipping workouts and eating even more than when they began their weight loss journey. Trying to make a big lifestyle change in one massive leap often leaves a person feeling tired, overwhelmed, and anxious.
And because of this, they often give up, believing that they’re just not cut out for this type of lifestyle change.
The exact same pattern often happens in manifestation.
When you learn about manifesting, it feels really exciting at first. You’re excited to create your reality through utilizing the power of your own positive vibration. You dedicate yourself to having positive thoughts all the time, trying to suppress any worry, stress, fear, or anxiety that you feel within. You want things to happen quickly, so you try to take massive leaps and bold jumps forward.
But after a couple weeks, this starts to take its toll.
It can be tiring to try to be positive all the time. And it can also be stressful and scary to feel like you always have to make these massive leaps forward – especially when you’re not seeing immediate results.
Like crash diets, crash manifesting often leaves you feeling worse than you did before you started. And it’s also not healthy for your total well-being: mind, body, and soul.
Here’s the truth about manifesting: there will be times when you’re required to take big leaps forward. To do the thing you’re afraid to do. To trust your inner knowing, even though it feels kind of scary. You’ll know these moments when they come; you’ll feel it deep within when the time is right to do something that feels really big and life-changing.
But most of your journey won’t be defined by those really big leaps.
It’s the small steps you take each day that will make all the difference.
Why Small Steps Are The Way Forward
Consider the crash dieter, who tries to do it all at once: work out daily, cut their calories, walk over 10,000 steps a day, embody perfection in an attempt to lose twenty pounds in a month, only to gain it all back the next.
What if they had taken their journey more slowly?
Consider this alternative: they start just by replacing their lunch with something a little healthier and adding in three, thirty-minute workouts a week. Maybe they’ll gradually start to increase their step count. Then, they start swapping out some of their high-calorie foods for lower calorie ones, but they still allow some wiggle room for foods they love. They explore different types of exercises to find the ones they enjoy most. They allow themselves to take their time with this new lifestyle change, and because of this, they actually have fun with it.
They want to do these things because these new habits feel really good.
Ironically, by releasing the pressure to be perfect, they actually see more long-term success than the person who goes all in right away in an attempt to be perfect.
I also like to use marathon training as another helpful comparison. When I trained for my first marathon, I knew I wasn’t just going to wake up on Day 1 and run 26.2 miles. I had to create a training plan. In my training plan, I scheduled short runs throughout the week to keep my endurance up and one weekly long run that would gradually increase in distance. My first long run was 8 miles. The next week, it was 9 miles. Then, 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. And so on.
Each day, I followed my training plan and made one small step forward at a time to help me prepare for that big 26.2 mile run. When the marathon came, I was able to run the entire length of the race because of the small steps I’d been taking for months before the actual event.
So what does this have to do with manifestation?
Let’s take a look at what the path of manifesting your dreams looks like:
- First, you set an intention based on the authentic, deeply felt dreams that have been placed in your heart.
- You communicate this intention to the Universe. Your positive vibrations are one way of communicating this intention, as by vibrating at the frequency of your desires, you express that you’re ready to receive more of this good-feeling thing.
- The Universe works behind the scenes to set everything in motion. It communicates back to you in the form of signs, messages, and most importantly, your own intuition. Being in the vibration of what you desire allows you to receive these signs and inner nudges with clarity. (In contrast, being in a state of stress, worry, and anger will cause you to miss these signs and feelings.)
- Then, you take inspired action based on the communication the Universe has given you. This leads you on the path straight to your dreams and desires.
That is the process of manifestation explained in its most basic form.
Most of the signs and inner nudges you receive on your path won’t be to do anything really, really big. They’re going to be gentle nudges leading you to take small steps forward.
This can be a little frustrating, I know. It’s not glamorous or exciting. Usually, when we want something, we want it now.
The irony here is that the more we try to force something to happen right now, the more we push it away.
But when you get into alignment and lean into the natural flow of the universe, releasing your hold on the timeline, things will start moving quicker. The small steps you take may seem inconsequential right now, but they’re going to move you forward so much quicker in the long run than trying to control and force everything to happen at once.
Small Steps & Aligned Action (My Personal Story)
To help you visualize what the path of manifestation looks like when you’re taking small steps, I want to tell you a bit more about my personal story. Specifically, I want to focus on what it took to build a successful website.
I didn’t always know that I wanted to be a blogger. This path was revealed to me only after I started practicing quieting my mind through meditation and mindfulness practices. Like a lot of people, I’d been knee-deep in daily stress and anxiety as I worked in the corporate world. I’d been meditating on and off for years, but once I started consistently meditating day after day, subtle shifts began to happen within and all around me. Creative paths and opportunities opened up for me. I started to see possibilities I didn’t see before.
As a result, my website was born.
But the path that led me to having a successful website didn’t happen overnight. In fact, it often felt painfully slow.
My first month, I had about fifty visitors in total. Most of them were my family. The second month, I had maybe fifty-five. Then, sixty. I was releasing blog posts with no set schedule. I didn’t know what SEO was. (SEO = Search Engine Optimization aka the practices you use to get your website to rank on search engines like Google.)
I didn’t know who my audience was. I knew absolutely nothing except that I was following the path that felt right to me.
So each day, I practiced vibrating at the frequency of success. I’d check my website statistics and pretend there were extra zeroes at the end of the audience metrics. I surrounded my computer monitor with post-its that had affirmations on them, such as “I am a successful writer.” I read them every single day, until finally, I no longer needed them because the affirmation became part of my subconscious mind.
I didn’t wait for success to come to begin feeling successful. I knew that because this dream was within me, it was already mine. I was success. I was abundance. I was everything I could possibly dream of and more.
Because I was consistently practicing this high vibration, I was an energetic match for my desires. That meant I was in the vibration to receive.
And I did.
Every day, I received gentle nudges guiding me to the next step. These were never things I went looking for; they came to me, one at a time.
First, another new blogger I’d met through Instagram sent me an email with tips on how to become successful on Pinterest. And I hadn’t even asked! She’d just thought of me and thought it might be useful. And it was; my Pinterest views and clicks began to skyrocket once I began implementing the tips she’d sent me.
Then, I stumbled upon a podcast that talked about blogging. I decided to listen to an episode, and it talked about SEO and keyword research. So I began to use the methods I learned about in the podcast. Incorporating these practices into my blogging approach took my viewership from 100 readers a month to tens of thousands of readers every month.
Another friend shared her strategy on newsletter signups and creating free printables. My newsletter subscribers started to increase by hundreds every single week.
Then, I was offered a chance to become an affiliate for a wellness company. This led to more affiliate opportunities.
And I had originally planned on mostly focusing on meditation, mindfulness, and manifestation in the beginning, but an intuitive hunch told me I should focus more of my articles on chakras. These became my biggest and highest ranking articles my first year.
So this was my journey to reaching online success: taking one small step forward at a time based on my inner guidance system and help from the Universe.
Every time I completed one small step, the next would follow. I never would’ve been able to complete any of it if I tried to do everything all at once. (And it would’ve felt super overwhelming.)
The Universe knew exactly what I needed when I needed it, and it provided guidance one small step at a time.
There are no overnight success stories. Even people who seem to have no problem manifesting whatever they want didn’t start out that way. I certainly didn’t start out that way. And there were so many times in the beginning that I wanted to give up, but an inner voice told me to keep going. To keep trusting. I knew I was on the right path, even though I couldn’t see what was coming up ahead.
The key shift came when I realized that just because I didn’t experience instant, overnight success didn’t mean I wasn’t manifesting. I realized that these every time I was nudged in a certain direction, I was receiving. And as long as I kept following those nudges, I’d continue to receive. Every single step was a result of aligned action. Every single small step forward brought me closer to my dreams.
How To Start Taking Small Steps To Manifest Your Dreams
Each day, you have the opportunity to take steps toward manifesting your dreams.
The most profound steps are ones that are inspired by your deep inner knowing; they should feel good and right to you, even if some of them may scare you a little. This means taking inspired action based on what your intuition is telling you. Remember, this is a form of receiving. Receive this guidance. Follow it. Let the Universe continue to lead you down your authentic path.
Know that every small step you take makes a big difference in your overall journey.
If your small step is simply sending an email, buying a book, or registering for a class, it may not feel like a big thing, but it’s actually a huge step forward in your manifestation journey. Your small step can even be something as simple as writing down a list of goals or creating a vision board. Don’t put pressure on yourself to do “really big” things all the time. If you take one small step each day for the next month, you’ll be 30 steps ahead of where you are today.
Every morning, ask yourself at least one of these questions:
- Where is the Universe guiding me next?
- What feels like the next right step for me?
- What’s one small step I can do today to lead me toward my dreams?
You might find it helpful to keep a dedicated notebook just for documenting these next steps (or to include this as a section in your daily journaling practice).
Now, if nothing comes to you right away, that’s okay. Some days, you may not receive a new “next step” but rather a continuation of a previous step. Other days, your mind may feel a little foggy, or nothing will feel right to you.
That’s completely okay. This doesn’t mean anything is wrong with you.
If your mind is feeling a little clouded, don’t try to force something to come forward. Instead, focus on meditation and mindfulness practices. Let it come forward naturally. (It’s kind of like trying to force a cat out of its hiding spot. The more you try to force it, the less likely it will come to you. But when you walk away and focus on other things, eventually, it will come out in its own time.)
If you’d rather not approach this as a daily practice, you can also approach this on a weekly or monthly basis. At the beginning of a new week or month, ask the Universe for guidance on what your next steps should be. See what comes forward. Write it down so you can’t ignore it.
Once you’ve written it down, see if you can pick up on any subtle feelings within. Looking at it on the paper in front of you, does it still feel right? Is this the thing you’re meant to do?
If so, now it’s time to take aligned action. Take that step. Do the thing that feels right deep within.
What Does A Small Step Look Like?
A small step is an action you can take that will serve and support your manifestation journey.
If you don’t meditate but have been receiving signs and inner nudges to start, then your small step can simply be trying a ten-minute mindfulness meditation today.
A small step can be purchasing a book, researching a specific topic, creating a spreadsheet, buying a product or course, signing up for a free webinar – anything that feels right to you.
Note that everything I listed above is a seemingly simple thing. Nothing feels too overwhelming. This is what most of your small steps will look like: gentle nudges that feel clear, loving, and expansive.
There is a next tier, though: steps that will feel a little bigger than buying a book or signing up for a free webinar.
Let’s say you want to manifest your soulmate. You’re called to create a dating profile. Maybe you create it, but you don’t even make it active yet. Creating that profile is one single step. Making it active is the next step. Responding to a message may be the next step after that. And then, if it feels right to you, going out on a date with someone you’ve clicked with might be the next step.
That fourth step of going on a date is a little bigger than creating the initial profile. But when you look at each step from an objective perspective, you can see how aligned action and leaning into divine flow has led you to this moment. Small steps are the foundation that lead you to these bigger, more exciting steps.
And finally, there is a third tier as well: those big leaps we talked about in the introduction.
One major reason why a person may shy away from their dreams is because they believe their journey consists of just these really big leaps.
But it’s the small steps that will make up most of your journey. The big leaps will come less often, and they’re usually a result of all the small steps you’ve taken to get to this place.
For me, one of my biggest leaps was quitting my full-time corporate job to pursue writing. I didn’t make this leap overnight. I didn’t yet fully trust my inner knowing, and it took a few months before I finally made the jump. In this case, my rational brain helped me out. I found it beneficial to ask, “What’s the worst thing that can happen?” Even if it didn’t work out, I knew I could always get a new job. I also knew that even if it didn’t work out, that didn’t mean I had failed. No matter what, I would learn and grow from the process.
During your journey, you’ll take a lot of small steps, some slightly bigger steps, and a few giant leaps.
What these steps all have in common is that they’ll be a result of aligned action.
Or, in the simplest terms, they’re going to feel right.
When you’re vibrating at the frequency of your desires, you’ll be in the mode to receive guidance about these next steps. Your vibration is where it all begins. The more the vibration of peace/love/gratitude/success/abundance/joy/freedom (and anything else that feels good to you) becomes your norm, the easier it will be to receive those intuitive nudges leading you to the next step.
I want to end with this:
Sometimes, your next step won’t make sense to anyone but you. Other people will have no idea why it’s so important to you to read that book or sign up for that webinar or research a specific topic that you suddenly can’t stop thinking about.
And that’s okay.
It doesn’t matter if they understand.
What matters is that it feels right to you.
How do you normally approach your goals and dreams: with big leaps or small steps forward? What practices have helped you when approaching each new step forward? Share your tips and experiences in the comment box below!
More Manifestation Resources
- How To Manifest On Paper In 5 Easy Steps
- Morning Routine Checklist For Manifestation (Free Printable PDF)
- How to Manifest Someone (in 6 Simple Steps)
- Manifestation Challenge: Free 30-Day Manifestation Calendar
- Candle Colors For Manifestation (A Complete Guide)
Hi, I’m Zanna! I’m a blogger/freelance writer living in Boise, Idaho. My mission is to help you break through the barriers holding you back from accessing infinite abundance and to inspire you to gather the courage and confidence to follow your dreams.