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Sunday, June 24, 2012

Monday Morning Check In: Don’t Lose Your Marbles


Our university strings camp began today, and I will be tied up pretty much all day every day for a week. So today’s post will be short, but I hope you find the idea as powerful as I did when I first read of it.

I am a fan of John Maxwell’s books. I find many useful tools and ideas. I read them regularly and recycle them again and again. The other day in Mr. Maxwell’s Daily Reader, I stumbled across a story about an elderly man who was giving advice to a younger man about how to visualize priorities and keep a good handle on them.

In this particular scenario, the elderly gentleman estimated how long he might live and translated that into a number of weeks. Then he figured out how many weeks he had already used up so far in his life and how many weeks hypothetically remained in his estimated lifetime. He filled a jar with marbles for each week that he estimated he had left. Then as each week passed, on a Saturday, he would remove a marble from the jar. In this manner, the gentleman kept before him visually a representation of the number of weeks he had remaining in his estimated life. When he ran out of marbles, he shifted his perspective so that he would now celebrate having been given a little extra time.

I began the summer a few weeks ago with big plans to accomplish a lot of things. Unfortunately, many things came up, and there were other items still on my calendar and agenda that interfered with my big plans. [Sometimes I think I need a personal assistant and a maid to get everything done that I need to do in my life.] After reading about the marbles idea, I went to my calendar and figured out how many more marbles were left in my summer. I will find it useful to visually keep in mind the number of marbles I have left in the summer.

And, while I am at it, I will look ahead and countdown the rest of the weeks in this year 2012. I have several projects that I would like to finish, so this marble visualization will be helpful to keep me focused and on track with my projects. I hope that this marble idea helps you to do the same.
Have some marble fun!

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