“Give me 6 hours to cut down a tree, and I’ll spend 4 hours sharpening the axe.” – Abe Lincoln
You’ve probably heard the story about the two woodcutters:
Jim and Rob
The team at Mental Strength enjoy reviewing their story often. Here is their story:
Starting at sunrise, Jim began busily chopping wood, swinging strong throughout the day. Rob also started at sunrise, but as he chopped, he frequently sat down, then chopped, sat down again and repeated.
At sunset, they both stopped. Rob had 300% more wood neatly cut and organized, than did Jim.
Jim questioned Rob, “How could this happen!? You were resting all day!”
Similar to President Lincoln, Rob replied calmly and confidently with:
“I was not resting, I was sharpening my axe.”
Regardless of your goals, starting today, take time to sharpen your skills, your tools and your resources.
Not only will you be more productive but you’ll also be far more confident. Your concentration and your focus will improve and your mental fitness will grow.
Here’s a valuable exercise, just fill in the blanks:
“If I could learn to ______________ really well, I could make all the __________ I ever wanted.”
If you could wave a magic wand and be absolutely fantastic in one part of your work, career, or sport, what would that skill be?
- Would it be exploding off the line?
- Would it be closing the sale?
- Would it be investing in wellness-business start-ups?
- How about hitting kick serves?
- Or forehands on the run?
- Maybe its mastery of the hook pass route?
- Or mastering the solver add-on in excel.
Sharpening your axe a little every day will put you leap years ahead of your competitors and even coworkers – making you an evermore valuable teammate. Lasting success comes from you doing something extremely well.
Remember, everyone in the top 20% began in the bottom 20%.
Decide to own it. Sharpen your axe. And get in the arena.
And best yet, choosing to make sharpening your axe a daily habit may just eventually bring you everything you’ve ever dreamed about.