Modern Technology has changed our lifestyles dramatically. It has an impact on every aspect of life and “living in the fast lane” has become such a cliché that it is almost like a status symbol. But there is a more reliable way to ensure success; it is by taking small steps. Take one small step at a time, and you are on your way to success.
Speeding Things Up
Not too long ago – when people were still travelling on horseback – life was much slower and more relaxed. A hundred mile journey wouldn’t exactly be part of your daily routine. And when you had to make that journey, you would set out a specific time for it. For instance; you would set out one day to make the journey, another day to attend your meeting or whatever activity you are there for and on day three you would make the journey back home.
Yet, there were no rush as everybody knew about the time involved in undertaking such a journey. But then the mechanically driven car was invented, and now the same trip could be made in much shorter time. You could now make the journey, attend the meeting and return – all in one day. It still wasn’t too bad….you still needed to set aside one day for this activity though.
But then the cars became faster. Instead of making it easier, having to spend less time travelling, attending your meeting and then having some time to relax before making the faster journey back; productivity became an issue. Instead of one meeting, it was now possible to arrange for two meetings. Then it got even faster still, and you could attend to business before leaving, travel one hundred miles, attend a meeting (or two) and even attend to more business on the way back as well.
Then came air travel, and the hundred mile scenario now became a thousand mile scenario. And for many professional people this jet-setting lifestyle is not a yearly- or even monthly occurrence, it became a daily lifestyle.
The Price of Technology.
A fast-paced lifestyle seems to be very exciting. All the glitz-and-glamour captures the imagination of many and they become part of the rat-race. Nobody has time for taking those small steps anymore. There is too much to be achieved, and it needs to be done in a flash.
But there is a price to be paid and an expensive one on top of that. Currently, a commonly used remark that we hear so often is “over-worked and under-paid”. How did this happen?
It’s all in the name of “productivity”. In his book Shave 10 Hours Off Your Workweek, New York Times Best-Selling Author, Michael Hyatt refers to the scene from I Love Lucy when “Lucy and Ethel get hired at a chocolate factory. Their job is to wrap chocolates as they come down a conveyor belt.
Their manager says they’ll be fired if they let a single chocolate slip by unwrapped.
Everything starts out okay, but within seconds the chocolates are coming too fast. Lucy and Ethel start popping them in their mouths and filling their hats with the overflow.
When the onslaught finally stops, their manager comes to inspect their work. She can’t see that Lucy and Ethel are hiding all the unwrapped candy, so it looks like they’ve done a good job. Their reward? “Speed it up!” she shouts to the person driving the conveyor belt”.
It’s sad, but it’s true. When money becomes the motivating factor, enough is never enough anymore. The more people get from you, the more they want from you. And those who make it to the top, often become their own worst nightmare.
And the blessing of technology which is supposed to make life easier, now often ends up being a curse, because people don’t know where to draw the line and maintain balance in their lives anymore. With that, I’m not saying that technology is evil; it is man that cannot control himself. That is why we are facing all kinds of life threatening diseases and they are all stress related.
Instead of having more time available, we end up having even less time for family life, recreation or even exercise. And when we do find time or the opportunity for exercise, we are either too tired or we have become too lazy for physical activity.
The Age of “Instant Everything”.
Over and above the fact that everything needs to be done and achieved at super lightning speed, people now also needs instant gratification. Everything must happen now. It seems as if nobody is willing to save up for that dream holiday anymore, or to buy that new shirt, or new dress….
There’s no time for taking any small steps, it’s now and it’s all or nothing. Whether they’ve got the money or not, people want instant gratification. Instead of saving up and paying cash, they use credit, because “we must have it now”.
The dark side of this is that many people apparently don’t know how to operate on a budget either, and before they know it, they are in major financial difficulty.
But not only does this problem strike where spending is concerned, even when it comes to earning money or building a business or a career, people are impatient and want instant results.
I’ve seen many cases where people claim to be desperate for employment. Yet, when something becomes available, they say no thank you. Either the salary is not enough or the position is not senior enough. I’m sorry to pop this bubble, but when you’ve had some miss-fortune, you sometimes just have to start at the bottom again.
Whatever you are, be a good one. – Abraham Lincoln
Take Small Steps – One At A Time.
We may have all the technology in the world, but if we don’t have control of our minds, we are in serious trouble.
We need to renew our minds (Romans 12:2) and not be conformed to this world. If you think the way the world thinks, you might be heading for trouble.
I recently heard a talk over the radio where reference was made to the late Paul Getty. When he came to the end of his life after five marriages that ended in divorce, he stated that if he could have another chance at life, he would do anything to enjoy love and have a successful marriage.
Yes, Paul Getty had all the money he desired, but his money couldn’t buy love, and he came to the end of his life as a lonely man.
I’m not saying you can’t have fun, but you need to maintain a balance in life. Having your priorities in place and living a well-balanced life can provide true fun. What is the sense in having the means to have fun, but you never have the time (or health) to actually enjoy it? What is the sense in having fun, but nobody to share it with?
Take control of your mind, learn how to change your thinking, and start preparing yourself for the journey. Learn to start thinking creatively and enjoy the journey to success.
We cannot solve our problems with the same level of thinking that created them. – Albert Einstein
When things aren’t happening at the speed of lightning, don’t get depressed about it. Don’t start blaming everybody and everything around you because things are not going according to plan.
In the age you are living in, it can almost be guaranteed that you will face things that won’t be going according to plan. Now is the time to change your attitude towards instability and uncertainty as it has become a part of life for many. You need to move away from focusing on the problem and start focusing on solutions.
See your problem as a challenge, a springboard to finding yet another solution. Also see if you can find more than one solution to a problem which will open up the possibility of having choices.
Today’s companies have enough problems as it is; they are not looking for people who can add to their problems. Whether you provide a service or whether you are seeking employment, companies are looking for problem solvers.
Another problem that many people face today is that they try to over-complicate everything. When something appears to be simple and straightforward, it tends to be overlooked and everybody keeps looking for that complicated solution. I mean…..it just can’t be that simple, can it?
This same principle needs to be applied when you start setting your goals. Whether you want to find a solution to a problem, start a new business or a project; break it up in smaller, easy and achievable goals. Then keep your focus on the first achievable goal at hand until it is accomplished before you move on to the next.
This can even be applied in your faith journey. There is no such thing as “name it and claim it”. Yes, it is true, Joshua 1:8 (NIV) says “Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful”, and John 15:7 (NIV) says “If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you”.
These are just two examples, but we first need to learn to read everything in context. With that I mean that you need to study the Bible and learn about the will of God for your life and pray in line with His will. And yes again, He only wants the best for you, but because of that you also need to learn that His timing is always perfect and His ways are beyond your understanding. So with the first delay, which looks like your prayer has not been answered, you need to know these things and not get discouraged. You need to develop your faith and stand in faith.
As you develop and grow, you can start applying your faith more and more, but start small. It is recommended that you find someone who is strong in their faith to assist you on this journey. When looking at Joshua 1:8 as mentioned above, it is clear that some action is required on our part too. We have been created in a physical world and we need to take action. After praying, the answer is not going to magically appear from heaven. But when you know the will of God and you prayed accordingly, you can act in faith.
Enjoy the Journey by Going Back to Taking Small Steps – One At a Time.
So, buckle up and enjoy the journey. It is going to be an exciting one and it’s going to be what you make of it. Taking small steps – one by one – will put you in control. It will enable you to identify any obstacle in time so that you can safely take appropriate action.
Don’t know where to start? Maybe it’s time to start looking inward….discover that hidden treasure that you have been hiding all these years. That in itself can be a joyful journey.
How far are you on your journey? Have you ever had to start over? I had to. How did you do it and are you keeping it simple this time?
I look forward to hearing from you.