I once heard the story of a man who said, ‘if I have two hours to cut down a tree, I will spend one hour thirty minutes planning how to do the cutting and do the cutting in 30 minutes.’ This is a real example of having to use strength and strategy in what you have to do and trying to strike a balance between the two. Some people will first try out everything using their energy and when nothing works they begin to ask questions and talk to other people who have been in similar situation.
Today in our society, we find a lot of people who want to try things out first before they ask anything and we also have a lot of people who wait for things to happen and go in the direction that everyone is going. When they eventually join the crowd in the popular direction then they realize that it’s not work because there are too many people in that direction.
We should always be at least a step ahead of others in what we do and that way we can make things a lot easier for ourselves. When you are a step ahead of others you will not have to be in the crowd when the crowd is running towards something and it now looks like it is not working because there are too many people running after the same thing. Remember the man whose statement I started with? When other colleagues start struggling with cutting the trees and are wondering why things are going wrong, it may look like this other man is wasting too much time working on paper or standing in front of a tree and thinking or even talking to himself. At the end of the day he would get the job done faster than the one who puts energy to work before putting wisdom to test.
How to always be at least a step ahead:
1. Read more than your contemporaries to be more equipped
2. Spend more time thinking and planning so that you will not struggle when you start work
3. Take a look at those who have done what you intend to do and observe very well
4. Watch what the crowd is doing wrongly and take another direction.
5. Always have mentors so that you can ride on their experience.
A ride on the experience of a mentor is always a smooth ride but a ride on your own experience alone can be a very rough ride!
You need to know that there is hardly any crowd in the direction that planners take because so many people know about planning but not too many people ever practice it. You will enjoy a great deal of peace for being ahead through planning and talking to people about what you want to do before getting into it.
I have some situations where I meet old colleagues and they are surprised at what I have been able to do or what I am doing but some of them are also quick to remember that I have always been in that line working something out, planning and also talking to those who have gone ahead of me.
My dear, it is very important that you put yourself a step ahead of your contemporaries but to do that effectively you have to plan when others are just struggling and never try to experience everything yourself. From today, be a step ahead!
© Fola Daniel Adelesi
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