Two tadpoles, Ted and Todd, hatched from the same batch of eggs.

They swam around excitedly, wiggling their little tails with great enthusiasm.

They swam up to their mum and exclaimed, “Look what we can do, look why we can do.”

The mother frog looked at the two tadpoles with great pride and called them closer. She then explained the process of metamorphosis and how they will eventually lose their tail and grow legs.

This news impacted the tadpoles differently.

Ted was excited about the future and continued to swim with energy and enthusiasm, occasionally looking back to see when his legs would start forming.

Todd, however, thought to himself, “What’s the point of exercising my tail? It’s only going to drop off eventually anyway.”

As a result, Ted kept strengthening his tail and increasing his stamina, but Todd’s tail got weaker and his energy levels dropped.

The mother frog took Todd to one side and suggested that he start using his tail more.

“But what’s the point? It’s only going to drop off anyway,” Todd replied.

After a little while, the two tadpoles’ tails dropped off and their legs grew.

Ted was excited and hopped around with energy and enthusiasm.  The consistent and energetic use of his tail had equipped him for this development.

Todd was less enthused. He was sort of glad that he now had legs, but he just didn’t have the energy to use them.

He didn’t know why, he just couldn’t be bothered.

There are times in life when we are being prepared for the future, but it’s not always in the ways we expect.

When we are learning calculus or ancient history in high school, we aren’t learning it because we are going to use it, but because the skills of learning will be valuable in the future.

When we start work, we do menial and low-level tasks, not because it’s the best use of our skills or because it’s what we learned to do in our previous studies, but because we will develop the necessary work ethic and level of initiative for later in our careers.

So the next time you think to yourself, “What’s the point? I’m never going to use this in the future,” remember the lesson of the two tadpoles.

Remember that the habits you form today will make a significant difference to your levels of success in the future.

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