How big is your circus?

Engineers like to solve problems. If there are no problems handily available, they will create their own problems. Scott Adams 1957 – Recently, my daughter introduced me to a wonderful Polish saying that many of us should take to heart. The phrase captures a wealth of wisdom in its few words: “Not my circus, not my monkeys.” The essence of the phrase is simple: the situation being considered isn’t yours to manage; it’s someone else’s problem. But the truth is, a lot of us go out of our way to take on other people’s problems. Why do we get involved with another person’s …
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Looking for solutions

Unless you change how you are, you will always have what you’ve got. Jim Rohn 1930 – 2009 Recently, I was working with a businessman who was concerned about the decline in his business. My first step was to get him to list all the reasons which, in his opinion, were responsible for the downturn. He mentioned the general economy and the local economy, a new competitor nearby, his “behind the times” supplier, and the list went on and on. When he’d finished noting all the reasons he could think of to account for the decline in business, I asked him …
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My fourth grade teacher

The human animal lives usually far within its limits; he possesses powers of various sorts which he habitually fails to use. He energizes below his maximum, and he behaves below his optimum. William James 1842 – 1910 Do you remember your fourth grade teacher? The other day I was thinking about mine. You might well wonder why, given that it’s been over fifty years since I was in that grade. My teacher was middle aged and rather bland, and she didn’t inspire me to learn new and exciting things. Here’s why she stood out: her class was the first time I …
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