Okay, in some cases, you definitely want to work smarter, especially if working harder would just needlessly take up time.
However, you don't want to live your entire life trying to find smarter ways to do things. Sometimes, you just need good ol' fashion hard work.
At my school, there is this high school kid who LOVES to find loop holes in any game we play. Instead of following the rules, which requires hard work, he figures out ways to get around the rules...which requires little work.
During a game we were playing, he said to me, "Mr. Jones, I found a loop hole!" To which I responded, "Just play the game! Stop looking for ways to cheat!" Why? Because for him, he would much rather take the easy route than to do any grunt work -- and being a P.E. class, it's all about grunt work!
We always look for ways to do things easier because we've been conditioned to hate hard work. During our grandparents' and great grandparents' days, hard work was the norm. Today, hard work is seen as pointless. We want to get everything as easily as possible, with little to NO suffering.
Now while there are times when working harder is just a total waste, there are plenty of times when working harder would actually pay off better than working smarter.
Going for your goals isn't easy. It takes work. You can't out-smart your way to your dreams. You need to get your hands muddy, your clothes dirty, and be willing to get a few cuts and scrapes.
When you work hard for what you want, you would appreciate it much more than if you were to get the same thing with little work.
You don't hear of self-made millionaires who worked HARD for their millions going broke.
But you sure do hear a lot of lottery winners losing their millions in less than 5 years! Why? Because they didn't have to work for that money. They just got a scratch-off ticket!
People who get weight-loss surgery will gain their weight back. They didn't have to work for their surgery.
People who lost weight the good ol' fashion way usually keep it off -- because they worked hard for it and they don't want to work that hard again!
Hard work makes the glory taste good! Smart work gives the glory a bland taste. True barbeque takes HOURS of work, but the food tastes delicious! Putting barbeque sauce on some RAW chicken wings and throwing it in the microwave for a few minutes would produce garbage!
Appreciate hard work. Be willing to work hard. Don't be afraid to do some sweating. Victory is sweetened with sweat and blood, not with brains.
Right now, someone is looking at your life thinking that it looks good. But you look at your own life thinking it's horrible.
My wife and I had what APPEARED to be the perfect life.
Looks like a dream life, doesn't it? But what others didn't know was that we were financially struggling and that our "dream life" wasn't by choice! It just worked out that way! Both my wife and I never knew when our next checks would come in or if we would be able to make rent the next month.
However, if you look at that life objectively, we were living the life that many people would love to have -- minus the worrying about money.
Looking at my entire life, I was usually in positions that other people would kill for:
And the list goes on...
Someone looking at my life would think that I had it made! But when I look at my life, I would only see all the troubles I had.
You see, sometimes you have to look at your life OBJECTIVELY to see how good you really have it. We can't seem to separate REALITY from our tainted PERCEPTION of our lives.
For us, we see only trouble. Other people would look at our life and see all the good things we have going on. We should do the same: we should look at our lives and see all the good things we actually have going for us.
While you think your life is bad, maybe it's not. Pretend that you're an outsider looking at your life. Would you see any trouble or would you only see the good things?
Believe it or not, I would sometimes look at other people who were worst off than I was and get jealous! Why? Because I was looking at the good aspects of their lives that I wished I had -- but of course, they were looking at the bad things going on in their lives.
No matter how bad you think your life is, you have PLENTY of wonderful things going on that you aren't paying attention to. Today, start looking at those good aspects. If you do this, you would start changing your overall perception of your life.
Remember this: your life is only as bad or as good as you SEE IT. Start seeing more of the good things in your life, and your life won't seem too bad.
Have you ever worked on a task with somebody who made the job more difficult than it should be? Maybe you've been in meetings with a group of people who came up with complicated solutions for a simple problem.
I believe life as a whole is simple, and each problem that it throws at us is also simple. However, we just make our problems more complicated than they should be.
For instance, how many of you wondered what you should be when you grow up? The solution is actually simple: just do something! Anything! Do whatever until you figure out what you ultimately want to do.
Many (if not most) of life's problems are simple, requiring only simple solutions. It's WE that make these problems more difficult than they should be.
For instance, let's say that you have an issue with bad body odor. No matter how much you shower, you just seem to get stinky at the middle of the day.
What would be some simple solutions to fix this problem? I know of one: look it up on the internet! If you can't find solutions that way, ask around. Somebody would have a solution for you.
Or let's say that you have a problem losing weight. It's like you've tried everything and nothing works. Well, look it up on the internet! Actually, wait, maybe you shouldn't, because there are a zillion different opinions on how to lose weight.
Here's a better solution: ask people who have lost weight and see what worked for them. It just might work for you too. Simple, right?
Sometimes, you just have to stop over-thinking a problem and just come up with a quick, simple solution. You could conquer a problem quickly by coming up with a simple solution. But if you complicate things, the problem would not only stay with you, but it will get worst!
Think about the problems you have. Now, what solutions can you come up with in less than 30 seconds? I bet you could list quite a few solutions in such a short time.
You may think your problems are complicated, but in reality, they are not. Yes, yes, I know: I have absolutely no idea what you're going through. And you're right, I don't. But here is what I challenge you to do: come up with several solutions for your problem in less than 30 seconds. If you could do this, then your problem isn't such a brain-teaser after all.
When you see your problems as simple, you won't have so much stress in your life. But when you complicate your problems, your life would be a mess. Simplify your problems! No matter how big or small your problems are, they only require simple solutions.
Remember this one thing: if you think your advice is good enough to give to others, then it's good enough for you, too!
Recently, I was thinking if I actually follow my own advice! I write these inspirational messages to others, thinking they would bless others. But then I start wondering if I actually believe that my messages would be good enough for me, too!
I've been making an effort to never advise anything to anyone if I'm not willing to do it myself. Think about it. If you're not willing to take your own advice, then you probably had bad advice! But if you have good advice, then it ought to help you as well as others!
I could preach over and over about working hard, going after your heart's desires, and sucking up during hard times. But if I'm not willing to follow my advice, then why should I even preach it? If I don't think my advice is good enough for me, then it won't be good for anybody else.
I also wonder how much better would my life be if I actually follow every bit of advice that I have given to others.
You ought to wonder the same thing. Where would you be right now if you actually followed every bit of advice that you have ever given in your lifetime?
Heck, you could probably make yourself a millionaire by following your own advice!
Sometimes, our best teachers are US. Not your old third-grade teacher, not your preacher, not your tax accountant, but YOU. Sometimes, the wisest thing you will ever hear may come from your own mouth. Sometimes, the best motivational speaker you would ever hear is YOU.
So, if you give someone advice, be willing to follow it yourself.
If you think your advice is good for others, then it's good for you, too.
Whenever I preach a "sermonette" in my church, the message is first spoken to ME, and hopefully the rest of the congregation could get something from the message, too! I ask that you do the same for yourself. Whether you say something good or write something good, let it be directed to YOU first.
Remember that others don't really do what you say. They only do something if they see YOU doing it.
And this message is directed to ME! Hopefully, the rest of you have gotten something from this message, too.
One thing that annoys me about being a teacher is hearing this:
They are bringing me their complaints -- but all I hear is, "Mr. Jones, I need you to save me because I can't save myself."
One of the things I'm trying to teach the kids is how to handle situations on their own. I've told them that I won't always intervene in their problems, because I want to see how they would handle them. At times, I'm impressed with how some kids take care of their situations.
And other times, I'm just disappointed, because some of the kids need someone to fix their problems.
Many of us still haven't learned, even in our adulthood, how to handle our own problems. We want someone to rescue us, to fix our problems, to take care of a situation for us.
You see, you could fix so many of your own problems if you would just decide to deal with the problems yourself. If you're always seeking a savior, you will always find yourself in a pit that you cannot pull yourself out of.
When we've hit financial hard times, I got tired of paying other people to fix a problem -- because paying others was draining our bank account! So, I've decided to deal with some situations on my own. I've learned to work on my own cars, do my own plumbing, fix my own washing machine, etc.
Instead of waiting for a bucket of cash to fall into my lap so that I could pay for heroes, I decided to take on the role of hero on my own!
You won't always have a rescuer. You won't always get the help that you need. Learn how to deal with it by yourself.
Years ago, my wife and I were on the WIC (Women, Infants, and Children) program to get government assistance for food. But using those WIC vouchers was a pain, especially if the cashier didn't know how to process them.
So, my wife started teaching herself how to clip coupons, look for deals, and she wound up saving a lot of money on food. She would bring home BAGS and BAGS of food for the fraction of the cost!
Eventually, we saw no need to continue with the WIC program. Yes, we've were still eligible for the WIC program, but we just dropped it. Let someone use it.
Now, she's teaching other families in need how to do the same thing that she did.
If you take matters in your own hands (in a POSITIVE way), you will see results quicker. If you wait for someone else to deal with your problems, you may NEVER see results.
Have a little more confidence in yourself, and you'd be amazed how quickly you could fix your problems. Then, you could teach others how to do the same.
For me, asking for help is the same as begging for money! I want to do EVERYTHING on my own. I would probably be a bad boss because I would want to do everybody's job for them.
Aren't you glad that I've recognized that before accepting any management positions??
But recently, I've realized that the human race wasn't designed to produce loners. It was designed as a network so that everybody could help everybody.
Or in other words, you're not supposed to be successful by yourself. You need others to help you get there.
I've been reading up on the history of my college, Abilene Christian University, in Abilene, Texas. It took only one man to have the vision for the school back in 1906. But it took many groups of people (even the entire town of Abilene) to make the school survive through bad times AND to make the school a huge success to this very day.
Trying to do things on your own is admirable to a point. It shows that you're definitely not lazy. But there comes a point where you have to throw your hands up and ask for help.
You do not know what resources other people have. And many times, it only takes just ONE PERSON to change your life around for the better. But if you keep to yourself and make enemies for yourself, then nobody could (or will) help you better your life.
If you ought to learn one important thing in life, it should be that you are to ALWAYS make friends. NEVER make enemies, even if the other people are "jerks." Live peacefully with everybody, try to work with everybody, be willing to compromise, and in some cases, be tolerant to others. Keep as many friends as you can, and you will ALWAYS have some source of support.
Burning bridges, getting revenge, carelessly expressing your opinions at the cost of hurt feelings, not willing to forgive, and shutting the world from your life are perfect ways to destroy any support from others.
I cannot list the many times other people have supported me. Whether it was finding a job, building a business, getting money, finding babysitting, having a place to stay, etc., I've had lots of support from others that made my life so much easier. My life would be hard (and even dreadful) if I had to depend on myself for everything!
Don't be afraid to have support from others. One day, someone will ask for YOUR support. Let others help you be successful, and in turn, YOU help others be successful.
Anything that happens would happen for two reasons: you either MADE it happen or you LET it happen.
In my PE classes, I sometimes have my kids play soccer. One thing I would notice about the two teams is that one is always more aggressive than the other. Sometimes, one team is so passive that they are practically letting the other team win.
With one group, I had to tell them that they were not being aggressive enough. They weren't trying as hard as they think! It was as if they weren't trying to win; instead, they were letting the other team win!
Then once the passive team knew that they needed to fight a little more, the game started to become tougher!
In life, we either live by making things happen or letting things happen. I'd dare say that most of us live a life where we let things happen.
How many of you usually feel that:
If you say yes to more than ONE of these, then you might be living a life where you just let things happen to you. Instead of aggressively making changes in your life, you would just accept that you could only do so little.
Remember that you could do MUCH MORE than you think. You don't have to let life happen to you. If there is something you truly want to conquer, then you need to make up your mind to do it.
Yes, I know, I make it sound so easy. But remember that you only have two options in life: you either make it happen or you will let it happen. I don't know about you, but I get weary of letting things happen to me when I could be the one to make things happen.
If you're tired of being stuck where you are in life and you want to move forward, stop letting stuff happen to you.
Going back to the soccer game example, when the kids were being too passive, they were letting the other team win. They were barely fighting! But when they saw that they could do better, they were starting to score points. Instead of accepting a losing game, they wanted to fight hard to win it.
Same thing in life. Don't sit back and let things happen to you. Don't lose the game because you just don't want to try. Be proactive in getting what you want. Life won't simply hand you a trophy. You need to go out there and get it!
So don't accept defeat. Don't play victim. Don't feel sorry for yourself. Empower yourself to do more so you could finally move forward in life.
An "acquired taste" means that you have to get used to the taste. Maybe what you're eating tastes funny at first, but if you keep eating it, then you'd start to enjoy it.
An "inherent taste" means that you naturally like the taste, like sweets or spicy foods. You don't have to force yourself to enjoy the foods that have an inherent taste to it.
Many of us seek what we inherently enjoy, which isn't bad in itself. But it is a problem if those things would do us more harm than good.
While it isn't bad to go for the things that you enjoy, sometimes we have to FORCE ourselves enjoy things that would actually help us.
Instead of chasing after things we inherently enjoy, let's start chasing after things that we need to LEARN to enjoy. I'd dare say that MANY TIMES, what we need to LEARN to enjoy would be more beneficial to us than the things that we naturally enjoy.
Believe it or not, I DO NOT inherently enjoy exercise -- unless I'm teaching it or taking a class. But exercising on my own is an acquired taste. I have to FORCE myself to do it, because if I don't, then I won't exercise unless I have to.
Eating healthy is also an acquired taste for me. I'd much rather eat cake and ice cream all day! But if I did that, what would happen to me? I'd kill myself that way!
If you know that there is something that would benefit you but it isn't an inherent taste, then MAKE YOURSELF ENJOY IT! You can't live your life only going for things that you naturally enjoy -- otherwise, you won't accomplish much in the end.
Look at what you enjoy now -- and ask how much does it benefit you.
Now, look at the things you DON'T enjoy -- and ask how would it benefit you if you do it.
Acquiring a taste doesn't take long at all. You just need to do it little by little until you acquire a taste for it. Then later on, you'd get excited about doing it.
All information in this blog are for inspirational purposes only. Unless otherwise stated, all content is written and copyrighted by Aiyo A. Jones.