The most impressive students I had over my 30 years of teaching were…

The most impressive students I had over my 30 years of teaching were….

via David Kanigan. who consistently shares interesting and thought-provoking observations by himself and others, as well as a nifty collection of Caleb the Camel pics:)

I will have more to say on this in a bit …


A Little Perspective Setting …

Okay, let’s do a quick inventory of what is happening here …

Precision marching in step with dozens of other people … Thumbs up

A large group creating massive and recognizable MOVING pictures … Thumbs up

 In front of thousands of people … Thumbs up

 Oh yeah, while playing musical instruments … Thumbs up

 … and they are not even the main event.

Now, let me get back telling you how hard I have to work to juggle MY priorities … on second thought, never mind.

This is one excellent example of the payoff from organization and mindfulness.   Everyone knows what to do, when to do it, and does so flawlessly.   These folks are paying attention to both planning and execution.

 Can your organization do this as well as these college students? 

 What gets in the way of performance like this?

 How can you create this ability in your organization?

 Wondering just how the heck they do that in the Heartland ….


Our Daily Decision …

Being Us

That’s it … the whole thing …

Once we make this decision right out of the gate each day, everything else we do will fall into place … eventually.

For more thinking like this, visit Marc and Angel as they hack life by visiting the hard places and engaging in common sense. 

Dog and FriendNow to tackle that pesky question of just who I really want to be.   You know, when you fully embrace this question and grapple with it, life can be pretty scary for a while, as you come to realize that you really can decide who you want to be.

Then it’s just a matter of making it happen … and that is often the easy part:)

BTW, I hope you caught that “daily” part of this equation.  Every single day, we get new opportunities to declare, work on, and refine our vision for who we want to be.   How badly you missed the mark yesterday is not the point … aiming again or changing the target is the point.

I was reintroduced over the weekend to a video that is nothing short of remarkable.  No cute cats, or catchy nonsense words that foxes say … this is just a heart-warmer of a story about doing what they said you could not do.  

Check it out on YouTube by clicking here:

Arthur’s Transformation (Extended Cut).

After watching, then try to tell me “Change is too hard” with a straight face, in that whining tone we all use from time to time …

Making decisions and taking action in the Heartland ….


Postscript:  FOr even more, check out Inspired:  The Movie.

Packing My Bag For The Day …

image“Days are like suitcases.  They might be small, but some people can pack a great deal into them.” (Anonymous)

Do not respond to this quote by describing your multitasking skills in detail.   The research is overwhelming regarding the ineffectiveness of doing more than one thing at a time for other than very minor tasks.   I have talked about multitasking at several points:  Trying to See How Many Things You Can Get Up At One Time?” and “The Price …” are examples.  Others have written extensively about this as well, as a simple Google search will show.

Multitasking may be effective when combining two relatively minor tasks, such as watching television and doing house work.  However, Most of us deal with more significant challenges in our days, so multitasking is not an effective tool to help us accomplish those things which demand attention in order to do well.

The idea remains and I believe it to be true, that some folks manage to do a great deal more than many of us during the course of our day.

image“Our days are like identical suitcases – all the same size, some people pack more in them than others.” (Anonymous)

Well, this quote is accurate on its face, since we do each have the same exact twenty-four hours allotted to us.  Since we all have the same time to do things, we have to look to other possible sources of the differences in our accomplishments.

Some possibilities:


Some folks have the benefit of having received and earned advanced education, which hopefully included learning how to do more with your time.

Education should provide essential skills, including critical and creative thinking, ability to research, learning as a asset, and organizational techniques.   Education should also provide advanced people skills, including the ability to communicate and collaborate with others effectively.


This element should not be underestimated.   Where we are born and where we are makes a great deal of difference to our lives, in many ways.   The person born in a rural or small town environment receives a much different set of experiences upon which to draw than the person raised in an urban environment.   Living in a different culture, whether that culture is across town or across the globe, also makes a difference.


We cannot underestimate the value of simply picking a task and concentrating on doing it.   Going hand in hand with the position that multitasking is not efficient or effective is the idea that focusing on a specific thing will produce a more effective outcome.

We all have resources to bring to bear on an issue or a situation.   When we are using all our resources to deal with a single thing, we are maximizing the possibility of a positive outcome.

Well, those are the three I came up with this overcast morning.

What elements of achievement do you see that I missed?

What did I not say about the ones I mentioned?

What do you take issue with here?

Looking forward to your responses while I wait for the rain to start in the Heartland ….