Quality Magazine

Jim's Gems: Focus Your Energy

March 22, 2010
Professional and personal challenges come to each of us every day. Some of those challenges are things we have direct accountability for. However, there are some things we can control, and there are things we cannot control.

Professional and personal challenges come to each of us every day. Some of those challenges are certainly things we have direct accountability and responsibility to control or influence. However, there are some things we can control, and there are things we cannot control. There are things that we can change, and there are things that we cannot change. Like it or not, we just have to learn to accept these things.

By accepting what we cannot do, we free ourselves of the energy that can be devoted to what we can do something about. Likewise, when we accept those things we cannot change, we give ourselves more power and effectiveness over the areas where we can indeed make a difference.

We could waste our time and energy complaining that the ocean is too deep and wide, or we could figure out how to sail across it. Isn't that how new worlds were populated?

You could use the excuse that the mountains are too high to get past, or you could find a way to climb over or through them.

It's great to be aware of what we can do-but, it can be just as valuable to accept what we cannot do.

This awareness gives us the ability to put all our energy and resources into efforts that will truly make a positive difference. Accept what we cannot do, and we'll find great success in accomplishing what we can do.

As Albert Schweitzer, French Nobel Peace Prize-winning mission doctor and theologian said, "A man can only do what he can do."

Do all you can do but don't worry about those things you cannot do. Focus on those things you can influence and control-that is how success is achieved.