I was asked in a class recently to hold a heavy book in my hands, with my arms outstretched whilst I talked with the group about a particular subject. The subject is irrelevant to this blog, but it also became irrelevant to the class I was in too. Why, because everyone was distracted with what I was holding in my hands and the effort required to keep my arms out straight. What I was saying become secondary to what I was doing – for me AND for everyone around me.
The purpose of that exercise was to teach an important lesson. Get rid of the distractions in your life! They dilute your ability to realise your purpose! This is easier said than done, but the point is significant.
I bought a nice new car a few years back that got deliberately scratched by someone walking past it when it was parked. When I would show people my car (all brand new and lovely and clean) the first thing they would say is “you have a scratch there,” and they would then point to the offending panel.
Human nature is to see what is wrong first before seeing what is right. It is to focus on what is distracting versus what is important. It is to see the reasons why not before we see the reasons why.
If we want to be successful in this business we need to learn to think counter-intuitively. Focus on the positive, see the good, ignore the distractions, believe when others don’t, do what others wont and do it over and over again! I heard a great story of a Prison Warden that was dedicated to the reformation of his inmates. He built a robust programme, invested heavily in it and dedicated great time to it. A sceptic came to him one day and said to him “Don’t you know that leopards can’t change their spots?” He responded “True. Leopards can’t change their spots. But I don’t work with leopards. I work with people. And I see people change every day!”
Regardless of what we have believed in the past, regardless of how we have thought before, we can change our future by changing the way we think about it! Of course, change does not come by simply thinking. So let me leave you with one last suggestion:
Sow a thought, reap an action
Sow an action, reap a habit
Sow a habit, reap a destiny
The journey to change begins in our mind but finishes with out feet! Let’s make this new month of May – a month of mighty change.