How to Make Changes in Your Life by Adopting a Kaizen Mindset

Updated on January 2, 2018
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Sadie Holloway is a workshop facilitator who teaches interpersonal communication skills to help people strengthen their relationships.

Butterflies are a beautiful symbol of transformation.
Butterflies are a beautiful symbol of transformation.

Are You Ready to Take Charge of Your Life Right Now?

If you're looking for an easy, common sense solution for improving your career prospects, enhancing your social life, or bettering your health, then Kaizen is a good place to start.

The Kaizen method is about making gradual, step-by-step changes to your life that can be sustained well into the future. Think about adopting a Kaizen mindset as a way of making a safe, stable course correction rather than a radical one that throws you off balance.

The steps for implementing changes in your life by adopting a Kaizen mindset are simple and easy to follow. Here are some strategies based on the philosophy that can help you make sustainable and easily managed changes in your life.

1. There are no bad ideas when you are brainstorming. Every successful project starts with an uninhibited burst of creative thinking. When you are mapping out ways to improve your life, take note of all the ideas that come to you, even if they seem off the wall. It’s better to have 50 spontaneous, perhaps crazy ideas to sift through than just two or three perfectly rational ideas.

2. Be willing to let go of the status quo. Don’t make excuses, old habits, and attitudes that no longer serve your new goals. The Kaizen Method is about continually improved processes, not defending ideas and habits that don’t work for your lifestyle anymore. Just because your family has always eaten white bread, that doesn’t mean that you can't switch to a healthier whole grain, high-fiber bread. You may find that you’ll have to try a few different brands of bread before you decide on one that the whole family likes.

3. Laugh at yourself. Don’t take yourself too seriously. Laughter has been scientifically proven to enhance the learning process. So, when you are trying out new habits or developing new skills, finding the fun and humor while you do so will increase the chances that the changes will be sustainable.

4. See your mistakes as an opportunity to grow. Correct your mistakes as you notice them. Hold yourself accountable, and take responsibility for how things might have gone off the rails.

5. Aim for continual progress, not absolute perfection. It’s one thing to strive for excellence, and another to demand perfection. Trying to implement a new habit flawlessly each and every time is almost impossible, which is why so many people attempt to make changes but often fail over time.

Improving your physical fitness is easier when you see it as a step-by-step process of making smart, sustainable lifestyle changes.
Improving your physical fitness is easier when you see it as a step-by-step process of making smart, sustainable lifestyle changes.

6. You don’t have to do it all alone. Recruit other people to help you make changes in your life and reach your goals. Instead of seeking the advice of one “expert,” seek out the support and wisdom of people close to you whom you admire. Find a mentor who can help you reach your goals. Talk to your friends and family, and let them know how important making these lifestyle changes are to you and how much you would appreciate their encouragement.

Will You Join Me for a Walk?

Asking your friends and family to help you implement gradual changes in your life will make the path to success much more enjoyable. For example, starting a walking group with your friends is a great way to get healthy and boost your social life!
Asking your friends and family to help you implement gradual changes in your life will make the path to success much more enjoyable. For example, starting a walking group with your friends is a great way to get healthy and boost your social life!

What Changes Are in Store for You?

Which areas of your life do you think the Kaizen Method could help you improve?

See results

The Kaizen method can help you make lasting, life-affirming changes in your life without putting added stress and strain on your daily life. Go slowly when using the Kaizen method. This will help you to manage your expectations and avoid disappointment.

Source:

Gemba Kaizen: A Commonsense Approach to a Continuous Improvement Strategy, Masaaki Imai

Have You Tried the Kaizen Method?

How did Kaizen help your personal life? Please leave a comment below, and share your experience using Kaizen to improve your life!

Adding an extra serving of vegetables to your daily food plan is an easy way to start making healthy changes in your life.
Adding an extra serving of vegetables to your daily food plan is an easy way to start making healthy changes in your life.

© 2016 Sadie Holloway

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