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Friday, January 6, 2017

When Is Money a Blessing?


I am a business professor and I am a Christian. I often sit down with students coming from a Christian background who wonder if they should really be majoring in business. They have been taught that having too much money is wrong and yet the business world is what lights their fire.

I also have other students who come from a Christian background. They know they are destined to make it big in the business world. Why? Because they are Christians and God wants his children to be rich. They believe that Gods blessings are in direct proportion to how much money one makes.

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Saturday, December 31, 2016

New Year’s Reflections


It is time to start off another year. That means a few things are definitely predictable. People will stay up too late on New Year’s Eve. People will watch a bunch of football. It will be really cold in some parts of the country.

There is one thing that is more predictable than any of these. Here is what we know we will see. We will see a lot of people make New Year’s resolutions. We will see most of them break those resolutions. For this reason, we will see a bunch of people say that New Year’s resolutions are bunk.

I seriously doubt if I can write a blog post that will settle the matter of New Year’s resolutions. However, as somebody who has spent his life in the serious and systematic study of success, I think I can provide a useful perspective. Before you make a resolution, break a resolution, or resolve to never resolve, consider this. New Year’s resolutions are good. New year’s reflections are even better.

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Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Beware of the Wrong Narrative


The truth isn’t a point of view. Sir Winston Churchill said, “The truth is incontrovertible. Malice may attack it, ignorance may deride it, but in the end, there it is.”

Truth isn’t a popularity contest, Nobel laureate Anatole France explained, “If fifty million people say a foolish thing, it is still a foolish thing.”

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Thursday, December 22, 2016

Happy Holidays and/or Merry Christmas


This can truly be that most wonderful time of the year. For many, the world stops for a few days and we get to spend time with the ones we love. It is a time for laughing and eating, a time for saying “I thought of you,” and a great time to reflect on the many years gone by. And sometime in there, it can be a time to catch some great football or basketball. That is what happy holidays is all about. I wish everyone could have a happy holidays.

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Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Focus Part #2: Guarding Our Focus


What kills focus? My last blog post explored how we don’t want to keep a bunch of unfinished tasks rolling around in our heads. If we do, they take up the brain space we need to focus all our mental energies on the task at hand. People who have incredible focus are able to do one thing at a time, do it well, and then move on.

In the real world though, most of us aren’t afforded that opportunity. Our lives consist of a constant set of interruptions and distractions. Just when we get going on one thing, someone comes in and dumps something else on our desk. As we are focusing on the needs of one employee or customer, we get a text, email, phone call, or visit from three others who need us too.

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Friday, December 16, 2016

Focus Part #1: Adding Focus to Your Day


How important is it that we are able to focus 100% of our attention on the task at hand? Well, it depends on the task. For some tasks, it is crucially important. Daily we face challenges that require all the brain cells we can muster. For others, we can get by with half our brains tied behind our back.

I would say that few of us are going full tilt all day long. On the other hand, how far we go in life may be determined by our ability to, when needed, focus 100% of our attention on a single task until it is completed.

What I want to explore in the current blog post is how important it is to be able to focus on one task at a time. To do so, I want to take you back ninety years to a waiter with an incredible ability to remember what patrons had ordered.

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Tuesday, December 13, 2016

To Be Terrific, Get Specific


One of Zig Ziglar’s signature lines was this. “Most people are wandering generalities rather than meaningful specifics.” What he meant is that most people don’t have a clear vision of what they want to be or do with their lives.

To illustrate this, Ziglar spoke of Howard Hill, possibly the greatest archer of all time. Hill won 196 straight archery tournaments. His trick shots were unsurpassed by anyone. He was the archery king of the silver screen. But Ziglar explains that, in ten minutes, you could learn to shoot a bow and arrow more accurately that Howard Hill. All you would need to do is learn a little basic technique and put a blindfold on Hill.

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Friday, December 9, 2016

“I Accept Responsibility” Doesn’t Mean “You Fix My Problem”


It’s the end of the semester and so I may be a bit cranky. If this blog post sounds more like a rant than an inspiration, please bear with me. I love college students but a few of them can drive me nuts. It’s usually around this time of the year that the craziness is at its craziest.

After thirty-five years of teaching college, you think I would be use to anything that a college student can say. For the most part I am. But there is one thing that still gets to me. It happened again last night.

I caught a girl in one of my classes cheating. When presented with the absolute and completely irrefutable evidence that she had cheated, she willingly admitted to cheating. Not only that, she said over and over that she accepted full responsibility for her actions.

Unfortunately, here is what accepting responsibility meant to her. Since she confessed and accepted full responsibility, I should not make her face the consequences of her behavior.

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Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Difference Makers


It’s not about what we do. It’s about the difference we make.

Sam Mitchell who was the NBA’s 2007 Coach of the Year, explained it this way.  “There are guys who can put up numbers against you and there are guys who can beat you. The guys who could put up numbers, I never worried about them… It’s that guy that can beat you, that’s the guy I’m worried about.”

In football, Tim Tebow was the kind of guy who could beat you. Coaches didn’t think he had the raw skill set to make a sustained career in the NFL. However, when he actually did play, he found a way for his team to win. I am not sure what a “winner” is but whatever it is, a guy like Tebow is a winner.

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