There is a quote of Abraham Lincoln – Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe.
So, when we think how is this quote relevant to us, we try to cut down a lot of trees (complete tasks) in our day to day work. But, most of us never consider that we need to sharpen our axe, and forgot to tell, what is axe in our scenario? Our Mind.
Sharpen your Axe
The mind is our axe, which we use to complete the tasks at hand. It needs to be sharpened regularly, else it wouldn’t perform at its best. So, how do we sharpen our axe?
- Learning from Experts etc.
There are more than above ways to sharpen your Axe, but I will walk through the above two topics through this blog post.
We take breaks regularly during our workday like Snacks, lunch etc. Do they cause obstruction to completion of the task, not obviously? They indeed help us in completing task more effectively. So, rest is of a lot of types
- Sleep – Night sleep and short power naps
- Having short breaks
- Food or Snacks and water
- Games – Mostly Physical
- Singing/Dancing/favorite hobby etc.
So, if you take rest regularly then your mind will be refreshed and re-energized to perform your actual task at hand more effectively.
What happens if no rest?
Can you answer a question, what happens if you drive your vehicle or any device for that matter for longer durations of time aggressively? If your answer is it gets heated and start to behave abnormally then you are right our mind is also a type of tool which when operated a greater magnitude for longer durations of time – it gets tired.
And, if you still push without any rest then it results in Stress, increased blood pressure, fatigue etc. Though you would be successful in completing your task, you are risking the life of your body (which is another tool) in a reduction of its capacity and lifespan.
An effective way to complete a task, by properly exercising the power of your brain. The work done in stress might result in some mistakes which would lead to further complications as well.
So, giving rest to your mind is as important as using it.
Learning from Experts
We aren’t privileged to have the whole time in the world to learn on our own.
A person who doesn’t learn from mistakes is unwise
A person who learns from his mistakes is wise
While the person who learns from mistakes of others is Wiser
Learning from experts is nothing but learning from their life, their actions and their mistakes. This is another way to make your mind (axe) sharper and reach your goal or task completion quickly. Now, you have combined the hard work with smart work.
For example, you might have heard the story of Thomas Alva Edison who has failed almost of 10,000 times before he invented the electric bulb, he was a wise soul as he has learned from his every mistake and ended up inventing the bulb finally.
So, if you wish to create a bulb on your own now which is useful to current society, will you repeat the whole process of 10,000 times experimenting again? Nope, you would simply learn how Edison’s work has been modified for current trend by latest companies and how the transition has occurred from Filament bulb -> CFL -> LED.
If you invent a CFL again then your effort is waste, even if it is LED it is not that great because a lot of companies are already doing well selling them. Your idea or bulb would work or succeed if it is better than the currently trending LED bulbs in some areas like Cost, Life, Amount of Light, eco-friendly nature etc.
Above is one scenario and this applies to any industry or field of work, so if you learn from experts on what is currently trending and how you can embrace those ideas and mix it with your own unique talents then your task is accomplished.
It is a lot better to use the existing wheel design to reach new heights instead of re-inventing the same wheel again.
So, to re-iterate, by learning from your field and experts alone you would know whether there is a better solution for your problem already and use it instead of spending the time to re-invent something existing again.
Thanks for reading. Share your views about Sharpening your Axe and the post content with me through comments, I would be very happy to hear.
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I am Surya, began blogging to share my thoughts, which I feel are useful with the world as I do it with my friends.