Posts Tagged ‘status quo

22
Aug
12

Certain Inalienable Rights

Our country was founded on the declaration that all men have certain inalienable rights: life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. I would like to amend these to include: work, personal initiative, and the pursuit of going the extra mile.

If we’re not working, we cannot experience life. Work is something we do regardless of whether or not we get paid. In fact, our most vital acts are performed free of charge: raising children, bestowing love and forgiveness, volunteerism, and charity. This is what makes the world go ‘round. Working is as necessary to the individual as breathing. When the individual stops working, he stops thinking, and then stops living. My father was born in 1927 and remembers growing up during the Great Depression. His father, like many other Americans, did not have a job, but that did not stop him from working. We are on this planet to work, to give back and share that which is within us.

Personal initiative is the truest manifestation of liberty. The greatest read on personal initiative is found in Elbert Hubbard’s Life-Changing Classic, A Message to Garcia. Those of you who have read it are nodding your heads in agreement. Those of you who haven’t can purchase it for a little over a dollar, it will take you ten minutes to read, and it’s one of the top-selling books of all time. You have the right to not ask your employer how to do everything and to display some personal initiative by figuring it out on your own. You have the right as an employer to encourage your team to read this so that they can understand the infinite power of personal initiative in determining their value and even their salary. It’s the original “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” philosophy. Don’t ask your boss how to do everything, and don’t tell your employees how to do everything. One of my favorite lines is the man who does things without having to be told draws the most wages. Amen.

The pursuit of happiness requires going the extra mile. Happiness never comes from just doing the minimum. That’s called “getting by” and someday we will all have to answer to life, explaining what we did with what we were given. The status quo has got to go! No child was ever successfully raised by parents who did only the minimum. No marriage ever thrived where two people simply coexisted. No victory was ever achieved without someone, someplace, sometime, stepping out of the mediocre masses and going the extra mile. Some people are like blisters; they show up after the work is done. And there is no joy in being remembered as the bare-minimum guy. We go the extra mile because that is where the human spirit truly excels and finds its only source of happiness.

So claim these inalienable rights for yourself and achieve your true birthright now!

01
Mar
12

where’s my unfair share?

When a man tells you that he got rich through hard work, ask him: ‘Whose?’ – Don Marquis

All this discussion of “fair share” in today’s political arena got me thinking about the Parable of Talents found in the Bible’s book of Matthew, Chapter 25. In this parable, a man gives each of his three servants a bag of property, some say gold coins. The number of bags given was based on each of the servant’s ability. The owner then went on a journey and later returned to see what his three servants had done with what he’d entrusted to them.

 The first servant, who was given five bags, used his talents to gain five more. The second, who was given two bags, used his talents to also double the owner’s initial investment. The third was given one bag. He was afraid and hid his bag in the earth and returned it to his master crying, “See, you still have what is yours.” The owner cursed him as slothful and even wicked, for not working with what he was given. The third servant’s rationale was, “I kept exactly what was given to me secure. Hence, there was no loss, so what’s the problem?”

The trouble with defining fair share is that everyone has a different definition. But this parable clearly illustrates the importance of hard work and investment for each individual. The owner did not take bags from the first and second servant and redistribute them to the third. In fact the owner did just the opposite and threw the third servant out into the darkness! The mentality of the third servant is what’s getting us into trouble. So many are content to take what is given them and not seek to render anything in return. As Arnold H. Glasgow said, “All some folks want is their fair share and yours.”

The third servant didn’t fail because he did not multiply what was left in his care; he failed because he was too afraid or too lazy to even try. The path to a tremendous life is not measured in end results or final numbers or bags of money, or titles, or even speaking trophies won, but in our commitment to living life’s continuous journey to its fullest.

The rewards reaped on the path to living tremendously can never be found on the streets of status quo. Whenever you feel that you’ve done enough and it’s time to rest on your laurels for a bit, remember, there is no such thing as status quo. Time can never be recovered, inflation defeats the worth of currency, and most truly great opportunities happen only once. Nothing static or dormant retains its original value. Decay and depreciation is a fact of life as evidenced in death and taxes.

Equal opportunity does not mean equal outcome. Having lived all over the world, I am amazed at how out of touch many of my countrymen have become. America offers all of its citizens, and even non-citizens, an abundance of opportunities in the form of schools, roads, parks, hospitals, and civic amenities. I am thankful for those more successful than me because they have given me the opportunity to rise up to their level. And I will never take what’s been given to me and not work hard to put it to use and multiply it. That’s my definition of fair share. Robin Hood was wrong.

19
Apr
11

just say no to the status quo

The Parable of Talents found in the book of Matthew, Chapter 25, is one of my favorite illustrations of conquering the fear that prevents us from achieving excellence. In the parable, a man gives each of his three servants a bag of property, some say it was gold. The number of bags given was based upon each of the servants’ ability. The owner then went on a journey and returned to see what his servants have done with what was entrusted to them.

 The first servant, who was given five bags, used his talents to gain five more. The second, who was given two bags, used his talents to also double the owner’s initial investment. The third was given one bag. He was afraid and hid his bag in the earth and returned it to the master crying, “See, you still have what is yours.” The owner cursed him as slothful, and even wicked, for not working with what he was given. The third servant’s rationale was, “I kept exactly what was given to me secure. Hence, there was no loss, so what’s the problem?”

This, “no harm, no foul” mentality gets us into trouble. The third servant didn’t fail because he did not multiply what was left in his care; he failed because he was too afraid to even try. The path to excellence is not measured in titles or cars or bottom lines or bags of money, but in our commitment to living life’s continuous journey to its fullest. And the last gentleman, unfortunately, chose to stay put.

The rewards reaped on the path to excellence are never found on the streets of status quo. And by the way, whenever you feel that you’ve done enough and it’s time to rest on your laurels for a bit, remember, there is no such thing as status quo. Time can never be recovered, inflation defeats the worth of currency, and most great opportunities only happen once. Nothing static retains its original value. Decay and depreciation is a fact of life as sure as death and taxes.

So if we’re not living the most excellent versions of ourselves, we know exactly whom to blame.

16
Feb
11

you are your own worst enemy

Last week I had breakfast with a friend who shared his life’s journey with me. Like all of us he found himself at yet another crossroad and described his lane changes in a very interesting way.  He said, “You spend all those years helping people to become as successful as they could be, but in the end, I wanted their success more than they did.” The real-world translation of this is: “time to find a new job”.

Ariel Dorfman stated, “The greatest sin of all is satisfaction.” Enabling organizational or individual status quo is unacceptable. If today is as good as you’re ever going to be, why continue consuming the earth’s limited resources? Make room for somebody who wants to breathe deeply and drink unceasingly from the pool of life.

I think one of the most difficult questions in the universe isn’t “what am I going to live my life doing?”, but “how committed am I to continuously excel in my current occupation?” After all, that’s the reality that each of us faces every day the alarm clock sounds. A visionary isn’t somebody that has some kind of clairvoyant ability to see the future; it’s the person who acknowledges the tasks at hand and then does them to the best of their ability.

Any time I state a problem but not a solution, I am broadcasting to the universe that I don’t care enough to be successful. If I truly did, solutions, and not excuses, would be bubbling out of my head and flowing from my lips. As Thomas Jefferson so eloquently said, “Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude.”




Tremendous Tracey


CEO Tremendous Life Books. Book Evangelist

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