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Tonight, when I sat down to write, I just couldn’t be bothered.  I’m tired and low in energy, making it a challenge to get my mind into gear and my fingers typing. 

It happens to us often doesn’t it?  We just can’t be bothered!

When your energy levels are low, your motivation levels are low and the spark of inspiration is missing.  Unfortunately, this can also become a habit for many people who seem to go through periods of weeks, or even months at a time, when there is little or no action taking place.

I’ve certainly felt that way often and have found a few simple strategies to help me to get through these periods.  I hope that they help.

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The challenge of maintaining a resourceful and positive mindset can be challenging at times.

Whether it’s an incidental annoyance like peak-hour traffic or breaking a fingernail or if life is generally getting you down and you have a few problems piling up, it’s easy for us to fall into the habit of complaining about our circumstances.

We now have complaints departments in most large organisations and you only have to read the letters to the editor in your local newspaper or read a few on-line rants to realise that we now have a well-established culture of complaining in our midst.

I always like to put things in perspective, so before you launch into another list of complaints that you may have, consider the following and then ask yourself, “What am I complaining about?” Read the rest of this entry »

A white-tailed deer

Image via Wikipedia

The answer to this question seems obvious, but it would surprise you.

In the year 2000, bears killed 6 people in the USA, whilst deer were responsible for 83 deaths in the same year.

Of course, bears kill people by attacking them with their razor sharp teeth and claws, but deer just happen to walk inadvertently in front of cars causing serious accidents.

Sometimes, the things that we fear cause less carnage than less obvious dangers.

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There’s a story about a virtuoso violinist who was greeted by a female fan after another outstanding performance.

“I would give my life to be able to play like you.” The lady exclaimed.

The violinist grabbed her gently by the arm and whispered into her ear, “Lady, I did.”

According to Malcolm Gladwell, it takes about 10,000 hours to become an expert at a particular skill.

Is that a price that you’re willing to pay?

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This story is for all parents and is a great reminder of what our kids really value in us.

A man came home from work late again, tired and irritated, to find his 5-year-old son waiting for him at the door.

“Daddy, may I ask you a question?”

“Yeah, sure, what is it?” replied the man.

“Daddy, how much money do you make an hour?

“That’s none of your business! What makes you ask such a thing?” the man said angrily.

“I just want to know. Please tell me, how much do you make an hour?” pleaded the little boy.

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Sydney Swans supporters at the 2006 AFL Grand ...

Image via Wikipedia

On any given weekend, elite professional sporting teams will clash, with eager expectations from both sets of fans.

You can assume that both teams will be well coached, disciplined and possess a reasonably even spread of skill and athleticism.

As such, and as is the case in almost all big sporting contests, the game won’t be won with the body, but with the mind.

Mental strength is a huge factor in sports and is also applicable to success in business, parenting, church life or any other aspect of life.

I developed these three C’s of a winning mentality a couple of years ago when leading a large business team.  If you get them right, you will dramatically increase your chances of winning.

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When people think of inspirational leaders, they often refer to the great orators like Winston Churchill or Barack Obama.  These are leaders who are able to deliver a clear, clarion message that can impact the emotions of listeners and leave them feeling more inspired than before.

Thankfully, being an inspirational leader is not solely reliant upon standing up in front of a group of people and there are a few things that we can all work on that can assist us in getting more discretionary effort from our people.

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Connochaetes taurinus, Ngorongoro Crater, Wild...

Image via Wikipedia

One of nature’s great events is the annual wildebeest migration that takes place in Africa.

Millions of the large mammals move from one feeding area to another in massive herds.

The herds work well for the wildebeest as travelling in such large numbers protects them from predators, mainly lions.  If they were by themselves, they would be easy pickings, but there is protection in the herd and they all know it.

Unfortunately, most people think that the benefits of the herd apply to humans as well.

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A paved Roman road in Pompeii, Italy.

Image via Wikipedia

 

Taking the high road is one of those throw away lines that people sometimes use when in conflict with others, but it’s a phrase that’s very rarely explained.  

According to John C. Maxwell there are three roads that we can take in life:  

  1. The low road – where we treat people worse than they treat us
  2. The middle road – where we treat people the same as they treat us
  3. The high road – where we treat people better than they treat us

There aren’t many people who would admit to taking the low road, but I’m sure that many would admit to taking the middle road, treating people the same as they treat us.   

Whilst there is good reason for this, I would advocate always taking the high road.  

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An Indian legend tells of a man who carried water to his village every day, in two large jars tied to the ends of a wooden pole, which he balanced on his back.

One of the jars was older than the other, and had some small cracks.  Every time the man covered the distance to his house, half of the water was lost.

For two years, the man made the same journey.

The younger jar was always very proud of its performance, safe in the knowledge that it was up to the mission it had been made for, while the other jar was mortified with shame at only fulfilling half of its allotted task, even though it knew that those cracks were the result of many years of hard work.

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