Why it’s Worth it to Take One Microscopic Step Forward

starting is progress


My office has been so neglected while we put all of our energy into the barn project. But every time I looked at it, it made me sad.

I needed a little win.

pink door

pink door

I threw dinner in the oven and ran out to my thrifted office door armed with a quart of pretty pink paint and 15 minutes.

pink door

We’ll get around to cleaning off the porch and replacing the light. One day we’ll install that doorknob that’s still in the package on my desk.

But for now, seeing a pink door is surprisingly encouraging. It’s a visible sign that things are changing for the better.


It’s not there yet, but it’s better than it was a year ago.


When I get overwhelmed with how far we have to go, just like when we paid off that huge amount of debt, I step back and remind myself of how far we’ve come.

It’s worth it to start today. Even invisible steps can add up to big changes.


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  1. I love the pink door. Fabulous.

  2. Yes! And how often that first step is the stepping stone to so much more! But taking that step is the bravery part. Thank you for the reminder. I am going to hunt for a little step to take in my home today!

  3. Just finished moving yesterday! And THIS is exactly where I am right now! I’m going right on upstairs now to start removing trim to get ready to rent a sander which is step 1a of like 30 in refinishing the floor so we can get all our stuff out of the garage. But it’s a step!

  4. Ah that pink is so soft and pretty. My kids are going back to school tomorrow and I’m going crazy feeling anxious today (probably because we still need one more supply I couldn’t find anywhere and now I have to put name on everything.) I might need paint therapy to calm my nerves :)

  5. Myquillyn – I LOVE that you shared this! These days I’ve been VERY distracted with passion projects and feel like I’m losing steam around the house (which I still have a mile long list of things I’d love to update) – but this is such a beautiful reminder that sometimes it’s about the little wins :) Thank you for sharing the good with the seemingly-not-so-good – it’s a beautiful reminder that we all go through this on our way to cultivating our uniquely personal spaces.

  6. I may be a nut, but I honestly think the barn looks happier now that you all have painted it white, given it some pretty new windows, and now the pretty pink door. I think that your barn is going to be such a special place that it will smile. :)

  7. I couldn’t agree more!!!! He is SO happy!

  8. Totally! We have been repainting our house…such a big ordeal! Small victories have helped get us through.

  9. It’s the little things that make me happy too and you are spot on that starting is definitely progress!!

  10. Love the pink, and the message.

  11. Yes!!! Thank you for sharing–it’s so good for me to remember not to be overwhelmed with the huge task before me, but to just start with one thing, and focus on all that’s been done and not just all that’s ahead to do. The pink is lovely, I’m enjoying hints of pink in my house these days…

  12. Thanks for letting us know about the book! It’s been on my list for a while and I just keep forgetting to throw it in my cart. Just purchased! :)

  13. Got your book for the 1.99. Thanks for letting us know about the sale. It is awesome it is #8 on the Kindle list.

  14. Yeah for pink doors! The pots look great on the porch, too. Congrats on the popularity of your book!

  15. I was SO excited to get your book yesterday (on sale! Yippee! My favorite kind of book.) and I’m loving it so far.

  16. Soooo true! One step. It does not all have to be done in a day, but we want it, too! Such a pretty pink!

  17. Wow Nester, you speaka my language! ;-) LOVE where your heart has taken you! I’ve been saying that my (vintage) stuff owns me for a while. We are a real (DIRTY) farm family known to have critters of EVERY kind in our house. I’ve learned to relax and lower my house keeping standards while upping my entertaining quota. I need to master this while I’m still blessed to have a home full of family. Ready to truly purge with a big farm sale very soon. Thank you for always inspiring me in so many ways!
    ps~ I painted my doors happy colors first thing too.

  18. Oops – meant o say that of course I ordered the ebook n love it!
    <3 Leslie

  19. I bought your ebook yesterday for 1.99. :) Thank you so much. I’ve read half of it already. I really, really enjoyed reading your story about all your different house moves. I appreciate your positive attitude. I appreciate the advice you give. I’ve only recently found your blog and am so glad I did. You are real and I like that. Thank you for your blog. I love reading long posts. Thank you for being an inspiration.

  20. I bought your book while waiting for a plane…..So great!!! I can’t wait to get home as you have inspired me!!!!
    Thank You,
    Love it.

  21. After spending yet another day cleaning out a house, I needed this today! Beautiful shade of pink. <3

  22. Thank you for always being so wonderfully honest…#exhale #justkeepswimming

  23. After 20 plus years of living in the middle of either waiting or standing still, I am still amazed at how when I begin with one small thing, then move on to another small thing, and another and pretty soon, I realize there aren’t as many big things as I thought. The big picture is most always made up of an abundance of the small. Sorry for getting all philosophical:( My bad. Your article just got me to thinking and that made my fingers get to typing and well, one thing led to another and…yes, well, I’m going now. Thank you for sharing your heart. It was just the real I needed this morning.

  24. I needed this lesson today. Thanks.

  25. This is so funny to me! I’ve been working on house projects and feeling like I wasn’t getting anywhere and needed a win. LAST NIGHT I painted our dark blue door a pretty grey that I had bought awhile back from the discount bin. I was thinking “this will only take an hour and I’ll be done!” It felt good to have completed something and have an obvious impact. Glad we could share in our new-door-color joy!

  26. Aren’t we always in a hurry? It is certainly hard not to be, but I have been encouraging myself and my family to just “enjoy the journey.” No matter what journey we are on.
    With that said, thank you for inspiring all of us as you are inspired. Love the book. I downloaded it yesterday and already read it twice!

  27. Thanks for the inspiration. I so often put things off until I can do them all. Makes me realize that while I would really like a big kitchen remodel, I’ve wanted it for 10 years, so why not start small and replace the awful refrigerator?

    I love the reflections in the glass of the door. Each photo has a different reflection and it gives the entire collection a completeness. Wonderful.

  28. You’ve done a great job with the porch so far. Keep with the good work!

  29. little steps do make a difference! thanks for the inspiration!

  30. You’ve done a very good job with the looks of your home. It’s easy to see how sometimes “less is more” and you don’t need superfancy stuff to make it look pretty. Great job!

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