For most of human history, the vast majority of people couldn’t read.

Literacy was a rare luxury confined to the clerics or the ruling classes, with the rest of society not being able to discern what had been recorded.

Thankfully, times have changed and most of our communities are able to functionally read.  It makes the ability to communicate and learn much easier and has broken down a lot of barriers over the generations.

But with this almost universal ability comes an unfortunate complacency.

We forget that reading is a privilege and squander it.

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One of my favourite stories to come out of the Toronto Raptors’ NBA Championship is that of their coach, Nick Nurse.

After graduating college in 1989, he worked in a range of coaching positions across Europe, college and semi-pro leagues.

In 2005, he accepted the job to be an assistant coach for the Oklahoma Storm. It paid $43 a day. To earn it, he had to coach, wash the uniforms and drive the team to games.

Now, after 15 teams across five countries and 30 years after his coaching journey began, he is the coach of the 2019 NBA Champions.

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Get to work every day.

And while you’re at it, get there on time.

Work hard to meet your targets and deadlines.

Keep calm during a crisis.

Smile.

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If you have a big goal, chase after it relentlessly.

If there’s something meaningful that you really want to do with your life, pursue it vigorously.

If you’re genuinely passionate about something, cultivate it daily.

Now is the time for action.

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A single locust won’t do much damage, but a plague of them will destroy an entire field.

A single bee won’t collect much honey, but a hive of them will fill up jars.

A single wildebeest seems unimpressive, but watching them migrate in their thousands is one of the great sights of Africa.

A single action won’t do much to get you closer to your goals.

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Sow seeds.

Sow seeds.

Sow more seeds.

Sow even more seeds.

Keep sowing seeds.

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We’re all just visiting.

We’re not here forever.

One day we’re here and one day we will be gone.

With that in mind, we can act like tourists, creating memories and taking photos.

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The rain may be pouring down.

The wind may be blowing a gale.

Perhaps it’s too hot for you.

Or the humidity is too much to bear.

But if you’re under control inside, it doesn’t matter.

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People get very excited when they start something new.

They’ll bail you up at the water cooler to tell you about the success of their latest diet.

They’ll regale you with tales of how effective their new golf clubs are.

And as a recent convert to parkruns will attest, we’ll tell all and sundry about our Saturday morning 5km jogs, our personal bests and our tourist runs.

There’s something about the conviction of a recent convert.

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Dolly Parton once said,

When I wake up, I expect things to be good. If they’re not, then I try to set about trying to make them as good as I can ’cause I know I’m gonna have to live that day anyway.

So why not try to make the most of it if you can? Some days, they pan out a little better than others, but you still gotta always just try.

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