One of the most important skills in life is to know how to pay attention.
I don’t mean paying attention to details — you can pay others to do that. Pay attention to opportunities to learn. They are not always obvious. They are, in fact, almost never obvious…
My Daughter’s Training Wheels
So — we were in the car running errands today. It’s Saturday. We drove to pick up our cheese and butter from an Amish farmer. We haven’t bought those in the store for years, but that’s a separate conversation altogether. 🙂
Anyhow, my daughter says, “Dad, can you take the training wheels off my bike?” This wasn’t the first time she asked me this, and I felt the time was right to venture into a conversation about falling down…
Me: Honey, I will be happy to take the training wheels off of your bike as soon as we get home, but are you sure that you are ready to learn to ride without training wheels. You will fall down, you know?
Bella: Why am I going to fall down, dad?
Me: Because without the training wheels, there won’t be anything there to stop your bike from leaning too far one way or the other. Keeping balance will be your job, and you don’t yet know how to do it.
Bella: I have an idea — you can run behind me and hold the bike!
Me: Absolutely, honey. I will do it in the beginning. But as soon as I feel that you are gaining some balance, I will need to let go.
Bella: Why will you need to let go?
Me: For two reasons. One — I won’t be able to keep up with you once you go fast. And two — I know something you don’t know…
Bella: What, dad?
Me: I know that in order to learn to get up, you first need to experience falling down.
Bella: But dad — once I know how to go fast, why should I fall down?
Me: Because, honey, going fast is easy. It’s the first thing you learn to do on the bike; however, eventually you’ll have to slow down and stop, and that’s much harder than going fast. Balance is much harder to keep while going slow than it is while going fast…
There was silence. This conversation happened at 11:00 a.m. It is 9:23 p.m. I haven’t heard anything more about taking the training wheels off!
I’ll keep you posted.
If you are a newbie, you should know that I’ve just covered the first 7 years of your business life cycle. Extrapolate as much meaning from the above as possible; believe me — it’s all there!
P.S. My articles seem to get shorter and shorter. I wrote last week’s in a half of an hour. This took 9 minutes.
I think I delivered much more valuable content this week — agree?
I’d love to hear what you think. Please comment below!