We are what we repeatedly do; excellence then is not an act, but a habit. Aristotle
The first and best victory is to conquer self. Plato
Rule your mind or it will rule you. Horace
Many of us have had a hard time understanding the importance of self-management. Many of those who totally fail at this are imprisoned for failing to maintain minimum standards of acceptable behavior. Some of us continue to face various problems and difficulties due to inadequately managing ourselves. All of us have and will continue to face the negative consequences of our actions or lack of action.
The skill we have in practicing self-management is very evident in the way we live. Those that are proficient at this control the daily as well as the overall direction of their lives. They have the ability to monitor and manage themselves as if they were operating as an objective third person. They have high expectations and standards, and hold themselves accountable. These individuals manage themselves from both a parental and a supervisory point of view. This allows them to have goals, objectives, plans and methods for measuring and directing their actions. They are continuously dealing with their failures, shortcomings and weaknesses. They are objective and relatively unbiased in the way they manage, mentor and teach themselves to do better.
Most of us have had supervisors that were responsible to monitor, measure, and insure that we performed at acceptable levels. If we failed to do so, our ‘boss’ would have a ‘heart to heart’ talk and point out our deficiencies and what we needed to do to ‘measure up.’ The better bosses would go the extra mile and mentor us and help us learn to develop our true potential. They were parent, teacher, coach and boss. Those that are truly seeking excellence in life are doing a good job of performing these functions for themselves. Those that are doing poorly at this are living with the consequences of their poor self-management.
We tend to ‘rise or fall’ based on the expectations placed in front of us. If we are expected to operate at levels of high efficiency, we tend to rise to the occasion. Some easily set high standards. Others have major problems in doing so. The truth is that we ultimately have to set our own standards. The more we accept and excel at this, the more we accomplish and the more we will enjoy life. It is crucial that we accept this responsibility; being a good boss, accountable, teachable, self-directed, and becoming the best we can be. Failure has consequences!
Challenge: Do you see yourself as your own boss, manager, coach and mentor. Be objective. Observe yourself as an employee or as your own child. Observe your strengths, weaknesses and areas needing improvement? Consult and mentor yourself on how to do better. Seek to continuously improve. The better you do at this, the more you will live to your potential. You will live with the consequences of how well you do or do not do at this.
Wisdom: Hold yourself responsible for a higher standard than anybody else expects of you. Never excuse yourself. Never pity yourself. Be a hard master to yourself-and be lenient to everybody else. Henry Ward Beecher
In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:6
Humility and the fear of the Lord bring wealth and honor and life. Proverbs 22:4
His God instructs him and teaches him the right way. Isaiah 28:26
Without God as the center and anchor of our life we will never live up to our potential. We will never learn to master the trials and tribulations that come our way. The wiser we become the more we will realize our inadequacies. True wisdom means we will increasingly seek to let go and let God teach and mentor us. We cannot truly succeed without Him. We were designed to have an active and personal relationship with Him.
Prayer: Help me to let go and let You coach, teach, and develop me into what You have designed me to be.