"A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies, The man who never reads lives only one.”
"Knowledge speaks, but wisdom listens"
Over the past 4 years I have been on a mission to read as much as possible. With my schedule I am not able to sit at home and read as much as I would like, but I have discovered an awesome site called audible.com. You can purchase about any book you want on here, and be listening to it on your phone in a matter of minutes. Some of the topics I enjoy reading are Biographies and historical books. Self help and personal memoir topics have been stimulating me a lot lately as well. When we graduate from school, for the most part we stop reading and our quest to learn ceases. I will admit, that I am not much into fictional stories, but if that is what stimulates your brain then Harry Potter, and Lord of the rings it is! .. There is no substitute to reading on a regular basis. When I look back over my life I see the times spent reading on a regular basis are some of my happiest memories. When we pass from this life onto the next we can not take anything with us, except for our experience, knowledge and relationships we have developed. I will boast a little bit right now as I am averaging a book per week, and these are not short books, they are 400-500 page books that I am attacking like a starved lion running down a gazelle. Its amazing to think how much of our time is spent online or entangled in the web of social media. I am guilty of this as much as the next person, as I would find myself burning 1-2 hrs looking over Facebook and other social sites browsing the vacation pictures last summer of someone I knew vaguely in high school. I looked at myself thinking “what the hell is wrong with you Kenny?” It was doing me no good what so ever and I was simply wasting time and not stimulating my brain with anything worthwhile. Now, when free time presents itself I reach for a book or my phone to listen to my latest selection. Audible books are great as I am able to listen while I’m on the treadmill, driving to work, eating lunch, and cleaning up around the yard or doing laundry in the house. I live alone, so I am afforded the luxury of being able to sit in my own thoughts and soak in a great read when I’m home. I was reading about the exploration of the North and South Poles, and the first summit to Mt. Everest! One of the common themes that all of these adventure seekers all shared was their childhood reading and excitement of one day being able to accomplish the same things as the heroes they were reading about in their books. As of late I have found myself doing the same thing. For example right now I am reading about a group of wreck divers off the coast of New jersey who discovered a German U boat that was virgin 100% intact & had not been touched for 60 years. As I read it makes me want to get my scuba certification and do some recreational diving while on vacations to experience some of the same things these guys are. I am sure you have read a book, and then later seen the movie of the same story. The movie always seems to water down the story and the characters are never the same as we imagined them. Our imagination is best when its left to untouched to sculpt the images your reading about in your own head. .
This is such a great quote! I have found this to be true the older I get. I noticed this in my grandfather the last 10 years he was alive, he would simply sit and listen to you. I always knew he had something to say or had an opinion on the matter, but the majority of the time he would keep it to himself and just listen. I always admired him for this. Another funny quote that parallels this one is “God gave us one mouth and 2 ears for a reason. He intended us to listen twice as much as we speak”. We could all probably benefit from listening more, I will be the first to admit I have a hard time sitting back and listening to someone when I have an opinion or a solution to their problem. When helping to guide someone through an issue in their life, its best to listen to them, and help comfort them without giving your advice. If they ask for it, then by all means go ahead and give it to them. while sitting in business meetings the past several years I can generally tell the men in the room who have a good handle on life, & are secure in their position as they are the ones sitting back in their chair listening to the conversation and soaking it in. The men who love to hear themselves speak and have to get the first and last work on every matter are generally the ones who are insecure with their position at the table or their knowledge on the topic and subconsciously need to validate themselves by speaking up.. I try to adhere to this bit of wisdom in my personal life and professional life. I have not perfected it by a long shot, but I am getting better
“Where much is given, much is expected in return” Luke 12:48
This statement can be interrupted many different ways. It is referenced from a scripture in the book of Luke in the Bible. Everyone who has the opportunity to be on this earth has been given a great gift already. On top of that we are all born with many talents and gifts that are god given. I believe that each person is given a unique skill set they should develop and use for good. The trials and hardships we go through in life are exactly what shapes our character. As I look back over my life there were many times I was forced to grapple with some pretty nasty situations and endure some hardships, but in reflection I can see that those are exactly the things that made me stronger. Everyones talents and abilities are not the same and while some folks identify theirs early in life, I believe others (myself included) are still identifying and developing talents as we get older. I feel so fortunate to be in the life situation I am now, and to have the support system I have around me. When I look for the good around me and the talents and abilities I have been given, it always lights a fire under my rear to get out and serve and help the people around me. If you don't develop and use your talents they will dull and eventually be taken from you
I have found this to be true in my personal and professional life. At a very young age i learned the value of hard work from my grand father Kenneth R Metcalf. He was the hardest working man I have had the pleasure of knowing. The majority of the factors that shaped me as a young man are in direct relations to my Grandfather. There is a quote that says something to the effect of “70% of success is simply showing up” I believe this is true, and I believe the other 30% is working your rear end off while your there! You will never look back on a situation in your life and say “Jeeze, I sure wish i would not have worked so hard at achieving that goal”, you will always feel better knowing you have put in 100% effort. Bodybuilding taught me some very simple lessons, & one of them that I constantly reflect on is this - You cant have instant gratification if you want ultimate success and happiness in life. While preparing for bodybuilding show, you work all year, every day, every meal, every rep every set in the gym you are preparing your body to be displayed on stage in the future. All of that work goes into preparing for one day that you will be judged against your peers. The men and women that succeed in that sport do so, by forgoing instant gratification. They are not going out with friends on the weekends, they are not eating sweets and fatty foods. Rather they are preparing meals for the week, and planning their schedule so they can get in their workouts and complete their obligations for that week. Nothing shapes character more then skipping instant gratification. This spills over to many faucets in life. Financially, if you save your money early in life and invest early and continuously you will ultimately reap the rewards of the return on investment later in life as your able to live comfortably and be financially secure. Don't buy the new car, and DON’T get yourself into debt! A wise man told me early in life that there is a very easy way to never get into debt. I will share it with you now, get a paper and pen and write this down - “ don't spend more then you make”.. Yes, its that simple! That advice will save you so much heartache in life if you follow it. There are many things in life that are out of our control, but one thing we have absolute control over os the level of effort we put into the work we do. Hard work is a 2 way street, you put in exactly what you take out.