We tend to get in life what we are willing to tolerate. – John Maxwell.
Now, that is a wakeup call! Are there things in my life that I don’t want, that I don’t like, that I really detest, but that I am willing to tolerate for whatever reason? Sadly, there are. And I think it is something we all do. The good news is that it doesn’t take much effort to have a real change in this area, to not give in to the things we don’t want and thus change the outcome of our lives. If we want good things to happen, whatever we are doing, give it our all. If we stop tolerating the the desert ground in our lives, with a bit of effort we can turn it into a beautiful carpet of colorful flowers.
I was talking to someone today who told me they had a problem with procrastinating. I hate procrastination, not so much in others, but in me. For so many years I read one book after the other about Time Management, How To Get Things Done, Organization, and I still could not get over my problem with leaving what I had to do till later. Why didn’t I change sooner? Simply because I was willing to tolerate it. Although I still don’t get everything done right on time and still have a lot to learn, I have learned to just get things done, and to take action on the decisions I make.
Do I tolerate work that is not whole-hearted? I don’t mean it has to be perfect, but do I accept in my life work that is not done to the best of my ability. I pride myself in doing good work all the time, but I know that if I honestly look at areas of my life, I don’t to everything I do wholeheartedly. I sometimes do OK, just so I know I’ll get by. For example, I am in Toastmatsters, a club where we learn and practice public speaking and leadership. When I have to do a speech, I usually do fine, people cheer and clap, but I sometimes don’t, because I know I could have done better had I taken a bit more time to be ready and prepared. If I don’t do my best in the jobs and opportunities that come my way, should I be surprised if life gives me second best?
Do I tolerate dishonesty or do I live a life of integrity? Do I value truthfulness and do I keep my word even if it sometimes is not the easiest way? There are times when, at the moment, it may seem beneficial to tell a lie, forge a report, boost the sales figures just a little. I think I am doing pretty good in this area, because if others can’t trust me in everything I do, should I wonder if there are things that happen to me where I feel cheated?
Do I put myself above those I work with or live with, or do I love others as I love myself? It can be difficult sometimes, living in a foreign country, to really understand why people do what they do. And when they don’t do things they way I would have done them and they don’t think the way I think, it can often be tempting to fell they have a ways to go before they catch up, rather that understand the I may be the one having to catch up, or maybe we’re all right in our own way. If we look down at others, is it then any wonder they don’t look eye to eye with us, that there are misunderstandings and friction in the workplace or our families?
Let me first raise the standard in my own life, do what is right, and be the change I want to see in others. Let me stop tolerating what I don’t like and know to be wrong, and then, and only then, may I expect the same in return and get out of life the things I want most.