Patience is a lost art.Unfortunately I know, I have none.We want to be satisfied immediately.Results and successes have to be now.Service must be on demand.Next
day free shipping is expected.Test
scores need to be online immediately.Order on demand has to be available.We have no patience as a society any more.Maybe some of us do as individuals.We should all try to be more patience.Here are some reminders of the fact that
great things take time!
It took 26 months to build the
It took Da Vinci 4 years to
paint the Mona Lisa.
It took Michelangelo 4 years to
paint the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel.
It took Leo Tolstoy over 6
years to write War and
It took around 30 years to
build the Great Pyramid.
It took over 40 years before
Beethoven’s Fur Elise
It took Noah 100 years to build
is a tough time of year on your patience.
Try to exercise more when looking for a parking spot or waiting in a
checkout line. Be patient my friends.
What is the current trajectory of
your life?Where is your life
headed?If you stay on your current
trajectory, where will you end up?This
is a critical question.Often, we sit idly
by and let life take us in certain directions without attempting to influence
that direction.We also do not always
think about the long term direction of our current trajectory.It is important that we look at where we are
as well as where we are headed.
What you do today has significant
impact on your future.We have the
ability to influence the trajectory of our lives.Certainly some aspects of life are outside of
our control, but the parts we can control have the ability to take us in the
wrong direction if we sit back allow that to happen.Do not think that you have no influence on
the trajectory of your life. You do.Do
not sit back and let life happen to you.God has a plan for you and wants to see you pursue that plan.To do so you likely need to be proactive in
determining the course of your life.Check your current trajectory and tweak it as needed…
What if the words you spoke appeared on your skin like
tattoos, would you still be beautiful?
that.I totally stole this from a social
media post, but I did so because it really struck me.What about the words I yell during a Longhorn
football game?Then there are words that
run through my mind and out of my mouth when frustrated in traffic.There are so many examples of words that I
think and say that I would hate to have tattooed to my arms.Words are powerful, but so easy to throw
around.We should think about this more,
consider our choice of words before we open our mouths.Next time you are about to embark on a
cursing rant just envision all those lovely words tattooed on your skin!Scary…
It is easy to initially overreact, bite back,
or even yell in certain circumstances.I
have done it.We all have.I suggest a little different approach.Resist the urge to vent and overreact.First consider what will be gained from your
reaction.Is there anything positive to
come from it?Will something be improved?Anything gained?Will the outcome or the next step change or
become easier.You feeling better is not
a good enough answer. We all need to
vent.But biting someone’s head off is
not a good form of venting.We should vent
with close friends, confidants or mentors.
Overreacting seldom has a positive
benefit.So why do it?Save the energy.Preserve the relationship.Consider a more measured and appropriate
response at a more appropriate time.
week!It is the time we designate each
year to give thanks, to be grateful for all that we have.Shouldn’t we be doing that all the time?I had a conversation just last week with some
friends about the things we take for granted, food and shelter, hot running
water, a coat to wear when it cools down.If you are reading this, you are likely blessed well beyond most people on
this planet.Be thankful for that!Be thankful for that all year long!
These days there seems
to be a lot written about gratitude, and the role that it plays in a positive
outlook and happiness. Expressing your
thanks can really improve your overall sense of well-being. Studies show that grateful people are more
agreeable, more open, and less neurotic.
There are many ways to remind ourselves of our blessings and encourage
gratitude. I know people who maintain a gratitude
journal. Another friend recently reached
a milestone birthday and created a list equal to his age of things he is
thankful for. Don’t takeyour blessings for granted, Willie Nelson doesn’t.
"When I started
counting my blessings, my whole life turned around."
Be intentional about your gratitude. You will feel better, I promise.
not wait; the time will never be 'just right.' Start where you stand, and work
with whatever tools you may have at your command, and better tools will be
found as you go along."~Napoleon
MMM is a reminder to myself about the importance of simply getting
started.This is an area of weakness for
me.I want things to be just so.I want to be totally prepared.I want to feel like I have some control.I want to be comfortable with a big step before
I take it.I will never get far if I
continue to think like that.Sometimes
you just have to go for it.You have to
at least get started.We cannot always
wait until the stars are aligned perfectly in order to make change happen in
our lives.So I am reminding myself, and
all of you, don’t wait.The time may
never seem perfectly right. The right tools will come along and you will be
making progress. Just get started.
of being brave and courageous usually conjures up thoughts of physical strength
and fearlessness in the face of danger.It causes us to think of fighting for what is good and righteous, but it
doesn’t have to be like a scene from The Gladiator.The fight is often not a physical one.Being brave and courageous may simply mean
taking a stand for what is right.It may
mean being firm and resolute for what you believe.It is odd, but this kind of bravery can be
harder than physical courage.It can be
difficult to do the right thing given the pressures of society today.However, the impact of doing so can be far
reaching, even beyond the issue at hand.As leaders it is critical that we have courage.It breeds courage among our followers.Consider this quote...
“Courage is contagious.When a brave man takes a stand, the spines of others are stiffened”
courage about what you believe in.It
will be contagious.
Ever made a
request for something to be done only to hear, “I’ll get it done ASAP,” or
“I’ll get back to you ASAP”?This response
just leads to uncertainty and confusion about what is real and when things will
happen.Truth be told, ASAP is a phrase
that doesn’t come from anyone who is serious about getting things done.It is a strategy for postponement of work,
poor performance, or breaking commitments. It is often a chief cause of
breakdowns in teams who count on each other to get things completed in a timely
manner.ASAP is the vernacular for the
semi-committed.It is for those who seem
more comfortable living with unspecified promises than they are about giving
the gift of clear commitment.
ASAP has no specifics or timelines attached to it and shows a lack of concern
for others’ commitments and responsibilities.It’s a form of ambiguity that, in the end, will require more work than
being clear in the first place. How much more effective could we be if every
commitment and conversation were specific? People appreciate it when we tell
them what’s real.They are able to stay
accountable, share details of the commitment with others, and track progress
along the way. The remedy for life productivity and stress reduction rests
largely on what we can count on, and counting on ASAP just isn’t possible.
We all impact the lives of those around us.It is inevitable, as is the way that people
impact our lives each and every day.The
challenge is to impact people positively.The greater challenge is to proactively impact people positively.Never underestimate the impact you have on
others just during normal daily encounters.Try to consciously have a positive impact during those encounters.We all have gifts.We should strive to use those gifts in order
to beneficially impact those around us.Consider all of the uplifting ways you might be able to impact people
during your day.
Be an example
Consider your impact on those around you, and do
so positively. What will your impact be
Do you think people really mean it when they say
that they learn something new every day? They should. Too often we
treat the learning process as something with a specific end. We tend to
say we "went to school" or "received an education".
That sounds like we think we are done learning! In fact, we hardly begin
learning about life until after we are finished with our formal
education. Perhaps we need to think of our education as an ongoing
process not something that we have completed in the past. We really can
learn something new every day and we should.
The challenge of being a leader is walking a
fine line that requires incredible balance and sensitivity.Great leadership qualities can’t be taken to
extremes; they have to be balanced.The
challenge is to be…
strong, but not rude
kind, but not weak
bold, but not overbearing
humble, but not timid
confident , but not arrogant
Successful leaders are good at balancing these
qualities.How about you?
I enjoy a lot of the content found on Entrepreneur.com.Generally, it provides quick and easy reads
that contain useful and insightful information for business owners and
entrepreneurs.However, a recent article
caught my attention under the heading of Productivity entitled “101 Time
Management Tips to Boost Productivity Every Day”.The title is somewhat of a mouthful, but 101
tips?Seriously?Some John Maxwell lists, like the 21 Laws,
are borderline too long for me.
I like lists; bullet points make sense to me.You have frequently seen me use lists in the
MMM.But 101 tips goes way beyond being
a digestible list.I read it
anyway!There were a few valuable
suggestions.Many items really did not
seem to belong there.Several items were
very similar or almost duplicated.It
felt like the author had to work hard to come up with 101 items. Anything
needing 101 different items does not need to be in list format and certainly
does not belong under the productivity subject heading.I think I could have been more productive
with my time by not reading that article.
The MMM has on more than one occasion focused on the importance of
integrity.Reputations and relationships
rise and fall based on integrity or the lack of it.I have tried to live a life where integrity
is not only important to me, but is also clearly visible to others.I think it is one of the greatest keys to
leadership, not to mention one of the finest qualities we can pass on to our
In looking for people to hire, you
look for three qualities:
integrity, intelligence, and energy. And if they don't have
the first, the other two will kill you.
Warren Buffet sums it up nicely, but I would not limit it to
people I hire. I look for integrity in
people that I develop relationships with in all aspects of my life. So many great qualities are found where there
is a solid base of integrity.
Business is better than it should be at M.D. Anderson Cancer
Center, the parking garages and waiting rooms are packed.I spent some time there last week for a routine
cancer follow up1.Simply
being in that hospital, no matter the reason, offers a true sense of
perspective.It caused me to reconsider the
magnitude of my own life problems.Seriously
ill people, who are fighting for their lives, come from around the world to be
treated there.Those of us in Houston or
even Texas are blessed this facility is so accessible.The people you see there run the gamut of stages
of a cancer battle.They are both young
and old.Some are newly diagnosed,
others in remission.Many are in the
midst of rough treatments, some are just having a follow up, and others are
holding the hands of their ill loved ones.The common thread is cancer.
When you think things are going really badly consider what
others are dealing with.We all deal
with challenges, but a little dose of perspective, like the waiting room at
M.D. Anderson, can shed a new light on the severity of our problems.Even for those there as patients, the
perspective gained might be one of community and not being alone.Life is hard, we were never promised it would
not be.I have lost family and friends
to cancer and have friends battling it now.My wife and I have spent more time at M.D. Anderson with family, friends
and loved ones, than anyone should have to.The perspective gained by a few hours in a busy waiting room is
1I am a 15 year Non-Hodgkin’s
Lymphoma survivor and I received a clean checkup report last week.My wife and I have also both lost parents to
cancer.Please help our family raise
funds for blood cancer research at The Blanton Bunch.
“I forgive people, but that does not mean I accept their
behavior or trust them. I forgive them
for me, so I can let go and move on with my life.”
It is important to forgive, but I think many of
us are confused about what that means.
To forgive does not mean to forget.
It does not mean things will be like before. Forgiving does not mean relationships return
to the way they were. It could mean
these things, but not necessarily. To
forgive means to let go and move on. The
act of forgiving is more for us than our transgressors. Give yourself the freedom to forgive.
not just about BBQ and the start of football season…
Labor Day: What it Means
Day, the first Monday in September, is a creation of the labor movement and is
dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It
constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to
the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.
leaders have an acute sense of their own strengths and weaknesses.They know who they are – and who they are
not.They don’t try to be all things to
a great statement about effective leadership.It all begins with knowing one’s self.That means truly, objectively, and critically knowing who you are.It means knowing enough to know what you
don’t know.It means knowing who you are
not, and never will be.Leaders often
feel some pressure to know all the answers, be everything to everybody.Truly effective leaders know they cannot do
that.They have an understanding of
their own weaknesses.They do not
pressure themselves to answer every issue.That pressure leads to poor decisions and marginal leaders.Be an effective leader, know yourself!
There is not enough kindness in the world if you ask
me.We are too quick to judge, too
worried about ourselves, and always in a hurry.A bit of kindness goes a long way and may actually make someone’s
day.My wife Fran, is one of the kindest
people I know (way more than me).She is
always doing things for others.It is a
great attribute for her to have as a teacher.Here is the saying that she reminds me of often and lives by daily…
Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know
We all have battles, big or small, personal or professional,
emotional or physical.That barista you
think is slow is battling.The driver of
the car that just cut in front of you to turn is battling.Your co-worker who just missed a deadline is
battling.Just remember that before you
react, consider a little kindness.
Do you have plans and goals?Do you methodically plan out the direction of your life?I have to say that I am not very good at
this.Too many of us just let life come
at us.We take what life brings us.The problem with that is that you never know
where you are going or where you might end up.Setting priorities based on goals and objective gives us structure and
direction.It allows us to measure
progress and impact the trajectory of our lives.It is how we grow, change and improve.We just have to learn to be flexible, knowing
that plans will always changes.What is
that saying? Man plans, God laughs!God has given each of us a unique skill set
and He wants us to use those gifts.We
just have to be open to the fact that our plans may not always match His!Goals and plans are good proactive life
tools, just be sure and be open to the influence of God in those plans.I do not known Jim Rohn, but his quote below
is on point for this topic.
“If you don't design your own life plan, chances are you'll
fall into someone else's, and guess what they might have planned for you? Not
There is no key to happiness.The door is always open.
We live in a fast paced world, especially here in The United
States.To go along with that pace we
tend to be a bit impatient.We expect
quick service, easy answers, and immediate solutions.Happiness, we believe, should be constant and
easy.We look for a pill or a therapist
to fix our woes.We look for diets or
lifestyles that will improve our health and state of mind.We look for fads and trends to make us feel
good about ourselves.It seems to be
all about finding the easy answer, the key to happiness.
There is no “key” to happiness.There is no one thing that will make you
happy and keep you that way.Life is
comprised of challenges and struggles.I
do not even believe that we were meant to be happy all the time, however we can
be happier by choice.We can be more positive by choice.We can live a better life by choice.It takes a little determination and hard
work, not a quick fix.Certain things
can help us be happy, faith, family and health among those things, however
those have challenges too.Happiness is
a process, a door to walk thru again and again every day, a choice to make.
Stop looking for a key to happiness and walk thru the door,
by choice, each and every day!
There are leaders and
there are those who lead.Leaders
generally have titles, positions of authority or a formal role of leadership, but
influence is not guaranteed simple due to a title or position.Those who lead are different, they inspire
us.They are influencers. Those who lead
strike a unique cord with people that encourages followers.We follow them because we want to, not
because we have to.We follow them
because of how they make us feel about where we are going and what we are
accomplishing.Those who lead motivate
and encourage us.Certainly, leaders
with titles and positions can be those who lead, but it is not because of the
title.What kind of a leader are you?
getting ready for work one day last week and found myself gazing at an “ABC”
list of life advice in our bedroom.It
is a list of great life suggestions we received from some wonderful
friends.The “D” jumped out at me, since
I had done that the weekend before. The “G” had also caught my eye, as I have
clearly done that!In glancing at the
rest of the list, there are several that I need to be more conscious of doing. What
about you? They don’t all apply to everyone, but most of them do. Life is
short, here are 24 things to do while you can…
Avoid Collagen, Bloom Late, Celebrate, Dance At
Weddings, Eat More Chocolate, Fall In Love Again, Go Grey, Hold Hands, Inspire, Jettison Grudges, Kiss Like
You Mean It, Laugh, Mend Fences, Nurture
Friendships, Open Doors, Perspire With Aplomb, Quit
Whining, Rekindle Romance, Spoil Babies, Teach
Someone To Read, Upset
Convention, Volunteer, Wear Red, eXpect Joy, Yield Gracefully, Zing
“Thinking outside of the box” is an overused phrase, but what does
it really mean?Did you know that
sticker burrs (yes like you find in a field of weeds) were the inspiration for
the fastener we now know as Velcro?Now
that is outside of the box thinking!It
makes sense, but I sure would not have thought of it.When we look at the familiar with fresh eyes
we really open our minds to creativity.I am not the most creative guy around, but I try and look at business
problems with an open mind.It is very
easy to get caught in a rut, to live with blinders on.We tend to only see things within the
parameters we are accustomed.But wild
ideas are often really very creative solutions.“Thinking outside the box” might be overused, but it is a necessary way
of thinking.It does not come
naturally.We have to consciously force
ourselves to see with fresh eyes and think outside of the box.
Perspective can be powerful thing.A little dose can make one's own problems or situation seem quite
insignificant.Perspective also serves
as a reminder of just how little we really understand, and how much less we
really control here on earth.It can make
a person see their own challenges in a totally different light.Make no mistake, what we do in our daily jobs
is important and so are our family responsibilities, but the next time you
become frustrated by the challenges of your job, your boss your co-workers, or
family and friends, consider a little perspective.How does that frustration really rank in the
big scheme of things?Enjoy the quote
“There is nothing
either good or bad, but thinking makes it so.” – William Shakespeare
Cities are known for
things like food, culture, and architecture.Celebrities and politicians may be famous for specific good deeds, or
maybe more often certain indiscretions.Even certain years in history are known for what happened during
them.What are you know for?
It is a question often
discussed in real time about public figures, but for a lot of us it does not
come up until someone leaves this earth.We tend to discuss legacies only once someone passes away.We are known for who we are NOW, and what we
do while we are alive!Our regular daily
behavior leads us to have a certain reputation.Our legacy is being built as we speak.The good news is that it can be changed before we die!
How will you be
remembered for “the dash” of your life?What will you be known for during the years between your birth and
death?If you don’t like the answer, get
to work on how to change it while you still can!