Should I post this under “words of wisdom” or “tips and advice?”Â Does it matter?Â I suppose not.Â I never really paid any attention to daily renewal until I read Stephen Covey’s book, 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.Â
So much good wisdom in that book, and maybe, the most practical advice in it would be his principle of “sharpen the saw.”Â As wise words go, this is sage stuff.Â Heck Dr. Covey could be like that guy at top of mountain, sitting up there and dispensing great stuff.
Sharpening the saw, what does that mean.Â If memory serves, a man comes upon another feverishly sawing a tree.Â The first man asks the sawer, “what are you doing?”Â The sawer replies, “can’t you see, I’m sawing!”Â After a moment, the first man says,”wouldn’t it help, if you stop and sharpened your saw before continuing?’Â The sawer responds,”stop, can’t stop, gotta finishing sawing.”Â Okay, may not be completely accurate (check out the book, if you want the exact conversation), but hopefully, I captured the gist.
How often have we been so busy burning the candle at both ends that we forget that eventually the candle burns away.Â Unemployed or soon to be unemployed, who has the time or luxury to take care of ourselves, afterall, there’ll be time enough once job is secure in hand.Â And for some of us, a little feeling of guilt doing anything not remotely related to finding a job or earning money.Â Afterall, there’s no one else to feed the family or pay the bills.
I know all about it.Â Yet, the candle will burn away, and then, who’s left to feed the family or pay the bills?
Almost every wise person segments life into 3 or 4 major aspects:
Certainly that’s how Dr. Covey breaks it down.Â Far be it for me to disagree with these wise people, but for my purpose, I think I’ll keep it to three:
We must take time to stop and sharpen the saw, to engage in dailyÂ renewal.Â Find time to do these things:
Body – Simple enough right!Â Exercise just 30 minutes a day.Â NotÂ Â much, right.Â Walk brisk every other day.Â On the off days, do a regiment of situps and pushups.Â If you can invest in a pull bar that you hang on your doorway, even better.Â 3 execises – pushup, situp, and pullup.Â 3 sets of 10 reps, building up to 25 reps.Â Or if you’re new to this, for pullups, start with 3 sets of as many as you can.Â So, alternate 30 minutes of brisk walking with 30 minutes of strength training.Â You can find 30 minutes a day to keep your body strong.
Mind – Read, read, read.Â 15 minutes a day, maybe 30 but no more.Â just
Â start your day with 15 minutes of reading books by Harvey Mackay, Denis Waitley, or an autobiography of Sam Walton.Â Good positive books that lift your spirit and give you ideas – make you think!Â Newspapers do not count, lifestyle magazines do not count, tabliods do not count, websurfing does not count.Â Read good books.Â Try Og Mandino.Â Better yet, turn off the radio, turn on the cd player and listen Les Brown as you drive around.
Soul – Network – at church or hobby groups.Â Toastmasters meet for an hour or so, once a week.Â Wow, what great way to meet people.Â I don’t mean become religious, although if you are, getting back with touch with God wouldn’t hurt.Â A few minutes a day holding a one way, private discussion could be helpful.Â I understand he’s a good listener.Â A huge danger in being unemployed or burning the candle at both ends is becoming withdrawn.Â For a zillion reasons, you need to get out, meet people and stay connected.
None of this takes away from your job hunting efforts or job keeping efforts.Â In fact, to do all three diligently is to be so much better and prepared for the uncertainly and obstacles we all face as we journey through life.