Allow time for reflection!!
Vibeke Holtskog and her stories inspires me. This story is from her, and I want to share it:
Once upon a time, a woodcutter applied for a job at a timber company. Because he was both strong and eager, he got the job right away. Payment and working conditions were very good, and the woodcutter decided to do his very best in his new job. His boss gave him a brand-new axe and showed him the area where he was to fell trees.
He went out at once to start his assignment, and already the first day he fell 18 trees!
"Congratulations," said the boss and smiled contentedly. "Keep it up!"
The woodcutter worked even harder and even more motivated the day after. Nevertheless, he managed only to fell 15 trees. The third day he worked even a little harder, but only managed to fell 11 trees. Day after day, he fell less and less trees.
"I must have lost my strength", the woodcutter thought despairingly. He went to the boss and apologized, and shared his frustration over his lack of strength and his dwindling income.
"When was the last time you sharpened your axe?" Asked the manager.
"Sharping the axe? No, I have not had the time. I have been so busy felling trees ... "said the woodcutter.
Sometimes we are so eager to get things done that we do not have time to "sharpen the axe". To sharpen the axe is about doing thing that gives us refill, value and direction. Setting aside time to pause, reflect and develop are necessary to reach our potential and work effectively.
An obstacle to making improvements is limited time. Being in a hurry switches on our autopilot and prevent us from being open minded and willing to try something new. However, sometimes you need to pause. It can make you discover new opportunities, adopt new knowledge and make you willing to make changes that will allow you more time, or achieve better results. What will you do to "sharpen your axe"?