Of all the self help books, motivational seminars and self improvement ideas and strategies I have ever taken or read. The one book that seems to have had the greatest impact on me is. "The Slight Edge" by: Jeff Olson.
In this fast pace world of Fast Food, The lottery, even our cell phones and the world wide web everyone seems to want what they want right now. If we read a self improvement book we expect results by the end of the first chapter so we can get back to our golf game. Consistency in good things is a tough act to follow but those that do it are the ones that reap the rewards in the end.
I once heard a friend say that we are so impatient that the day will come that we will drive through a McDonald's drive threw window and as we are ordering someone will bee on the roof shooting our Big-Mack into our mouth. I think about the days when I would go to work and work all day, no interruptions take a ten minute break every two hours and a 30 minute lunch and often work 12 hours or more all the time every day. Today it seems that we all want it now. The got to have it now mentality has helped us but has also hindered us.
The only true way to true success still, is doing simple almost trivial positive things everyday. Those individuals that have true success and happiness in there life's is not because they won the lottery or were born into wealth. What separates successful people from the masses is the fact they are willing to do what others are not willing to do. There are several areas in our life's that we should devote a little time to everyday,. And I mean just a little because a little is all it takes, Mr. Olson in his book "The Slight Edge" refers to it as just a penny's worth, we can all give just a penny's worth. There are six area of our life that we should give just a penny's worth to everyday.
It is important to keep balance in our life and all the greats that I have studied say that the thing we need to keep on the top of our totem pole is our spirituality, our relationship with God or our higher power, or whatever belief you personally subscribe to.
A great radio talk show host that teaches good common sense practices for getting and staying out of debt is Dave Ramsey. I am sure you have heard of him, but if not you should check out some of his information, it is great. I love Dave because he gives credit where credit is due. He gives all the credit for his success back to his maker. When he is talking to individuals with troubled personal and financial issues, he almost always asks them. Do you have religious practice that you subscribe to, how is your relationship with "Christ Jesus"
Successful people not only recognize and pay tribute for there blessings but they do something in this area everyday. Now we all have busy life's, so none of us are able to sit down and read the bible each day. Jeff Olson says just give a penny's worth. Everyone has time to read from a spiritual book for one or two minutes, or everyone has time for a brief one or two minute prayer. Just give a penny's worth.
We can use this same philosophy for each of the other areas in our life. I spent considerably more time on the spiritual area, because as you study successful people like I said this is where they pay tribute.
However the concept hold true in each other other five area. And if I were to rank them they would go as follows. First like we have discussed 1. Spiritual 2. Home and Family 3. Physical and Health 4. Social 5. Educational 6. Financial
Wow! how can I spend time in each of these area everyday? Well, just give a penny's worth like Mr. Olson said. We have time to get up in the morning give our spouses a friendly hug and and a kiss and say a few kind words to our children. It seems trivial such a small thing, but over time all of those penny's add up .
As far as physical and health, Mr. Olson talks about how we won't all of a sudden blimp out and get fat and sick if we eat a McDonald's Big- Mack, but if we consistently go back and back over time it will affect us. On the other hand if we will just eat one apple a day, walk just a few steps farther. It seems so trivial but those penny's add up. I recently interviewed an individual, a 68 year old gentleman that told me he once weighed over 500 pounds. I asked him how did you loose all that weight? He said , oh I just got a smaller dinner plate and I started walking a little bit everyday. That's it, he said I ate a little less and I walked just a little everyday. It didn't happen overnight but the weight eventually came off just following these simple daily seemingly trivial steps.
The same concept holds true for social, educational and financial. Just one more smile a day to our friends and people we meet is a penny's worth and if we smile at one more person or acquaintance every day that will definitely enhance our social life. Mr. Olson uses an example in his book of a show shine lady at an airport that wishes she had the money to send her daughter to cheerleader camp. Mr. Olson's observance of this lady's large stack of romance novels sparked some of the fuel for his book.
What if everyday all we did was read three pages from a powerful self help book, like "Think and Grow Rich or The Secret" at the end of just one year that is 1095 pages. If the books are about 100 pages long. For just giving a penny's worth just three pages a day we have read about ten books on self help and personal development in just one year. The shoe shine lady would have had the knowledge and business sense to have had a whole string of shoe shine booths in airports all over the country. Only if she had just given a penny's worth to her personal development everyday.
This is a powerful concept and applies to everything in our life. What we spend our time doing is what we will become. I literally drive my kids crazy when it comes to playing video games, that's because I don't understand them. I have never devoted anytime to them so obviously I am not going to be good at them. This is a powerful example. Referring back to the shoeshine lady she chose to become an expert on romance novels instead of powerful personal development and business concepts.
Do we want to be experts at prayer and knowing our God, experts at personal development and knowing how to work with people, experts at business techniques and how to improve and stabilize our financial stability, do we want to have a sound mind and a strong body. Are we willing to give just a penny's worth everyday in all these important areas of our life.
We all have the same amount of time in our day it is just how we each choose to use it that separates us apart. Change in any area of our life comes from just giving a penny's worth consistently everyday. You see folks the joy in life really is in the the journey and not the end result.