A Light In The Woods

“There is a candle in every soul / Some brightly burning, some dark and cold . . . Carry your candle, run to the darkness / Seek out the hopeless, confused and torn / Hold out your candle for all to see it / Take your candle, and go light your world.”

Chris Rice, “Go Light Your World”

In The Dark

I grew up in the country. Beyond our backyard was a pasture, then the woods. My brother, my cousins, and our friends liked to play in those woods. One evening after supper, we ran into the woods to play a game. We were having so much fun we lost track of time and didn’t realize that it was getting late. Before we knew it, night had fallen and we were in the dark. I began running, but of course I couldn’t see and ran smack into a tree! (I suppose you could say I couldn’t see the tree for the forest.) Fortunately for the rest of us, one of the guys had a flashlight. He turned it on and then we could see him. We all gathered around and he led us out of the woods, shining his flashlight . . . no more running into trees.

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To Improve Productivity Improve Efficiency And Effectiveness

Efficiency is “doing things right”. Effectiveness is “doing the right things”. Productivity entails both – doing the right thing in the right way. Excelerated Productivity comes when you improve both efficiency and effectiveness.

improve efficiency and effectiveness

The Lioness And The Vixen

“A Lioness and a Vixen were talking together about their young, as mothers will, and saying how healthy and well-grown they were, and what beautiful coats they had, and how they were the image of their parents.

‘My litter of cubs is a joy to see,’ said the Fox; and then she added, rather maliciously, ‘But I notice you never have more than one.’

‘No,’ said the Lioness grimly, ‘but that one’s a lion.'” (1)

Becoming Effective And Efficient

This Aesop fable comes with the moral “quality over quantity”. (I leave it to you to decide if one lion has more “quality” than a litter of foxes.) But we can also read it in terms of efficiency – the lioness had only one baby – and effectiveness – that baby was a lion!

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The Difference Between Trying And Doing

“Trying” to do is different than doing and different than not doing. Trying lets us off the hook – we don’t have to succeed and we don’t have to fail. We don’t have to really do anything. That is languishing, NOT flourishing.

trying or doing

Trying Or Doing?

“If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.”

Once upon a time, as I attended a workshop, the presenter asked me to come up to the front of the room. She laid a pencil down on the table and said to me, “Try to pick that pencil up.”

I picked up the pencil. “No,” she said, “I said ‘Try to pick it up.’ Instead, you picked it up. Now, again – try to pick the pencil up.”

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To Do More, Do Less

Many of us have more to do than we can get done. To improve personal productivity, the solution isn’t to find better ways to do more but to find ways to do less . . . of the unimportant things.

Choosing The Right Thing To Do

“As Jesus and his disciples went on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha welcomed him in her home. She had a sister named Mary, who sat down at the feet of the Lord and listened to his teaching. Martha was upset over all the work she had to do, so she came and said, ‘Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do all the work by myself? Tell her to come and help me!’

The Lord answered her, ‘Martha, Martha! You are worried and troubled over so many things, but just one is needed. Mary has chosen the right thing, and it will not be taken away from her.’” ~ Luke 10:38-42 Good News Translation (GNT) [Bible Gateway]

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Passion And Perseverance: How Effort Leads To Achievement

Having a talent for a specific endeavor does not insure that you will do it. You must exert effort to transform the talent into a skill. Turning the talent into skill does not insure that you’ll achieve your objective. You must exert more effort to transform the skill into achievement.

A Failed Dream

I was 6 years old and excited to have the chance to take piano lessons. I loved music and dreamed about playing – hymns in church or songs for my family to sing together. Although they didn’t have a lot of money, my parents bought a nice new piano and had it placed in our living room. A friend of our family, Miss Pritchard, who played piano at church, agreed to give me lessons.

The first book was a breeze. Simple songs to start my understanding of the techniques of the piano. My teacher wrote numbers over the notes and then numbers on the corresponding keys of the piano. It was a simple matter to match the numbers on the page to the numbers on the keys.

Miss Pritchard also gave me scales to practice. But for this part, I wasn’t as diligent at practicing as I could have been — I found it boring to play the same 8 keys over and over. But I practiced my songs and when we had our first recital, I was a star! I performed the best and Miss Pritchard gave me a big hug when the recital was over.

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How To Increase Your Goal Motivation

Setting goals is a requirement for achieving your best life and living out your potential. Goals give you direction and focus. They are important for another reason as well — setting and achieving goals improves your well-being and positivity. But keep in mind that all goals are not created equal — some motivate you more than others. Choose goals that add to your positivity and keep you motivated to achieve them.

A Life Changing Gift

When I was in my early 30s, I was introduced to the man who changed my life. That man was Earl Nightingale. Of course, I didn’t literally meet Mr. Nightingale, but I received a program on audiotapes called Lead The Field as a birthday gift. In this series of audiotapes, Earl Nightingale provided numerous ideas on what it means to live a successful life. He expanded and expounded on the ideas he originally articulated in his program, “The Strangest Secret“.

I had more or less stumbled upon a career that I enjoyed but it was more by accident than by design. Through Lead The Field, I was exposed to a number of ideas that I had never been taught before. As I say, it was a life-changing experience for me. And it began my journey of learning and implementing ideas for self-growth and self-improvement. One of those ideas to which I was newly exposed was the concept of setting goals.

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Practicing Accomplishment

Accomplishment is one of the elements of well-being theory. We sometimes pursue accomplishment for its own sake, as well as in conjunction with the other elements – positive emotion, engagement, positive relationships, and meaning. Using deliberate practice to develop talent and skill is one path to accomplishment.

“Can You Swim?”

A professor was being ferried across a large river. To pass the time, he struck up a conversation with the boatman.

The professor asked the boatman, “Can you write, my good man?”

“No,” answered the boatman, “I never learned to write.”

“Then you have lost one third of your life,” the professor said. “Can you read?”

“No, sir,” replied the boatman. “I can’t read.”

“Then you have lost half of your life.”

Suddenly, the ferry scraped across a large rock and it tore a hole in the bottom.

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Castaway

To reach any BIG goal, you must grow to the person who can achieve it. You grow by taking one small action after another. In this way you prepare for the opportunity when it appears.

Do you remember the movie, Cast Away, where Tom Hanks is stranded for several years on an island in the South Pacific? In the movie, Hanks is a time-obsessed trouble shooter for FedEx. At a Christmas dinner with family, he is called to resolve a problem in one of their foreign offices and leaves the dinner to catch a flight on a FedEx plane.

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