The Little Things ARE The Big Things

“Yard by yard it’s hard but inch by inch it’s a cinch.” Small actions made consistently over time add up to big achievements.

A Lesson From The Ants

As a boy, I became fascinated by ants. I read everything about them I could get my hands on. One thing I learned from my reading was how to construct an ant farm and how to capture the workers and the queen from an existing nest. I used this knowledge to build several ant farms using quart jars.

When I was about 9 or 10, I made my first farm. I flooded the nest, captured the queen and some of the workers and carefully put them in the jar full of dirt. I covered the jar with black construction paper to keep out the light. And I waited. Continue reading “The Little Things ARE The Big Things”

Effort or Results?

“The amateur focuses on outcomes and expects immediate results. The professional plays the long game and prioritizes the process, perfecting it for years with no immediate payoff.” ~ Ozan Varol

The Process

“We decided to use the approach that we’re not going to focus on the outcome. We were just going to focus on the process of what it took to play the best football you could play, which was to focus on that particular play as if it had a history and life of its own. Don’t look at the scoreboard, don’t look at any external factors, just all your focus and all your concentration, all your effort, all your toughness, all your discipline to execute went into that particular play. Regardless of what happened on that play, success or failure, you would move on to the next play and have the same focus to do that on the next play, and you’d then do that for 60 minutes in a game and then you’d be able to live with the results regardless of what those results were.” ~ Nick Saban [Elmasry]

Nick Saban is considered by many people to be the most successful coach in college football. He has a lifetime record of 218 wins, 62 losses (and 1 tie). He is tied with the legendary Paul “Bear” Bryant for most NCAA championships. [Wikipedia] Saban credits much of his success to the fact that he and his teams follow what he calls “The Process.” Continue reading “Effort or Results?”

Small Steps Toward A Simpler Life

“Simplicity brings balance, freedom, and joy. When we begin to live simply and experience these benefits, we begin to ask the next question, ‘Where else in my life can i remove distraction and simply focus on the essential?'” ~ Joshua Becker

Choosing Simplicity

“I think the most wonderful thing about voluntary simplicity is that it means different things to different people. There is no one way to do simple living right. Everyone has a different concept of how they want to live, what is most important to them, and what they need to make them happy. Trying to live someone else’s idea of simplicity will never work.” ~ from “There Is No One Way To Do Simple Living Right

Choosing a life of volunteer simplicity has many benefits — more time, less debt, less stress, better health, better diet, to name a few. You don’t have to completely upend your life, quit your job and move to the country, or join the minimalist movement to enjoy the benefits of living more simply. Continue reading “Small Steps Toward A Simpler Life”

Enemy Of The Best

“The first step in crafting the life you want is to get rid of everything you don’t.” ~ Joshua Becker

“I had seen successful people let go of very good things that were not the best things to them.” ~ Dr. Henry Cloud

Don’t let the Good crowd out the Best.

In the book 9 Things You Simply Must Do To Succeed In Love And Life, Dr. Henry Cloud identifies one of the 9 Things as “pull the tooth”. If you’ve ever had a toothache, you know that temporary measures to hide or mask the pain do not work for long. You may be able to forget about it for a short time, but the pain always returns. Until you deal with the source of the pain, the problem keeps coming back. Continue reading “Enemy Of The Best”

Want to change a behavior? Change your environment.

“Many of our repeated behaviors are cued by everyday environments, even though people think they’re making choices all the time.” ~ Wendy Wood

You and I may think we’re in control of our actions, but research shows that nearly ½ of human behaviors occurs in the same location each day and is cued by the environment. [Duke Today] Recall Charles Duhigg’s “habit loop”, the 3-step process that causes habits to develop. [Duhigg] The habit loop consists of 1) cue, 2) routine, and 3) reward. Repetition of this loop over time causes a behavior (the routine) to become ingrained as habit.

According to Wendy Wood, formerly the James B. Duke professor of psychology and neuroscience at Duke and now at the University of Southern California, the cue is often our environment. Continue reading “Want to change a behavior? Change your environment.”

Magic Thinking

Forget magic. Real accomplishments require hard work.

“What’s missing, what we’re really looking for, is magic. Without realizing it, we want that momentary pleasure or excitement we feel to be a passageway into a whole new world—a world of ease. Unfortunately, it’s a world that doesn’t exist. Reality requires us to face three things: pain, uncertainty, and the need for constant work. No one, no matter how famous or rich, is exempt from these requirements.” ~ Dr. Phil Stutz, “Addiction and Magical Thinking”

Hard work is required.

Are you prepared to do the work required to succeed in reaching your BIG goals? Make no mistake – the Excelerated life is not achieved without effort. Sometimes it’s hard. Sometimes it’s boring. Many times, you’ll want to do something else. There will be times when you can’t tell that you are making any progress at all Continue reading “Magic Thinking”

Steady Wins The Race

Ready? On your mark. Get set. GO . . . consistently!
Consistent action is the key to growth.

“Motivation gets you going, but discipline keeps you growing.” ~ John C. Maxwell

Remember the fable about the race between the tortoise and the hare? The hare sped way out in front, then decided to stop for a bite to eat. The tortoise plodded along, slowly and surely, never wavering. When the hare saw that the tortoise was gaining on him, he took off again, far outdistancing the tortoise. He got so far ahead, in fact, that he decided he had time for a nap. Meanwhile, the tortoise plodded along, slowly and surely, never wavering. You know what happened — eventually, the tortoise passed the hare, who was otherwise engaged, and won the race. Continue reading “Steady Wins The Race”

Use It Or Lose It

The Parable of the Talents

“For it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted to them his property. To one he gave five talents, to another two, to another one, to each according to his ability. Then he went away. He who had received the five talents went at once and traded with them, and he made five talents more. So also he who had the two talents made two talents more. But he who had received the one talent went and dug in the ground and hid his master’s money. Continue reading “Use It Or Lose It”