Often times when we think of a knowledgeable person, he or she is book smart, a graduate of Harvard at the top of the class. Or maybe a scientist or a brain surgeon is our idea of specialized knowledge. What we must understand is that specific knowledge in any area of life can provide an edge. The pursuit of specific knowledge and a constant eagerness to learn — along with the practical wisdom of applying knowledge to a situation to produce a desired outcome — are character traits to embrace. We will grow as we constantly seek knowledge and seek experts to teach us about topics ranging from technology to finances to relationships to personal development to health and to leadership.
Don’t settle. For some, low self-esteem can make us think we can’t learn. Others can wear a mask of either arrogance that we don’t need to learn or complacency from a belief that more learning isn’t necessary. Many believe that they are fine and don’t desire to learn, yet what are we settling for? Do you have to be broke to want more money? Do you have to hate your job to want something else? Do you have to be on the edge of divorce to want to make your marriage better?
Do you settle for good when you could be creating spectacular? A lifetime goal of learning will keep you young and growing. What good books are you reading? What thought leader’s Podcasts are you listening to in your car? What seminar will you attend in the next few months?
It’s a choice. Do dog’s like bones? Most of us would think they do, but they don’t. Dogs like steak; they settle for bones. Think about a dog family making dinner–you know they would give us the bones and keep the steak for themselves. What happens is that we feed the dog bones, bones, bones until they start thinking they like them!
Dogs begin settling for bones instead of steak. It’s not that they dislike bones or that bones are bad, it’s that they are settling for bones. Take someone who had been in a good relationship for ten years–a good relationship, not a bad one. What they experience year after year is a good relationship. It is relatively easy then to start settling for a good relationship (bone) instead of trying to create a spectacular relationship (steak).
It’s not about changing who you are with. You can make the relationship you are in better. If you have a job, a home, a nice car, and you make a salary that is equal or better than most of your neighbors, it is easy to start setting for a good income instead of creating a spectacular income. Do you believe it is important to pursue excellence and to seek to surpass your current level?
Many people get confused and think, “If I want more, I must be dissatisfied with what I have.” This is untrue; it equates being motivated to being dissatisfied or ties happiness to dissatisfaction. Crazy, huh?
Where are you settling for ordinary in your life? What action could you take to create spectacular?
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