This Article Continues From C: Courage & Confidence (Part 3)
Your 4 Greatest Assets
In his audiotapes on Insight, Earl Nightingale, author and motivational speaker on the subjects of personal success, character, and meaningful existence, said:
“Our minds, our abilities, our talents, and time represent our true wealth… and it’s the investment of our wealth that will determine our rate of return.”
Do you know what assets you already have? Do you know the value of those assets? Are you investing the wealth you already have and maximising your rate of return?
Growth leads to renewal, which is a sign of life. Stagnation leads to decay, which is a sign of death.
So if you’re not using the assets of your mind, abilities, talents, and time, or you’re not investing your innate wealth to progressively realise your worthy cause, your value isn’t growing or being renewed.
You’re not growing if you’re not renewing, and you’re not successful if you’re not growing.
Let’s do a stocktake of the assets you already have and briefly discuss each in turn.
- Your Gold Mind
- Your Abilities and Skillsets
- Your Talens and Gifts
- Your Valuable Time
#1: Your Gold Mind
Are you aware of the gold mine that is your mind? You could, in fact, call it your ‘gold mind’.
A version of one of Aesop’s Fables, The Goose that Laid the Golden Egg, tells of a cottager and his wife who had a goose that laid a golden egg every day. They figured a great nugget of gold must be contained within the goose, and in their greed they decided to kill the goose to get the gold. But to their surprise, they found the goose was no different from their other geese. The foolish cottager and his wife had hoped to become rich all at once, yet all they had managed to do was deprive themselves of the riches they were assured each day if they had remained patient.
This fable about the short-sighted destruction of a valuable resource is a good analogy for the wasted resource of our mind. Like the golden goose, our minds have the ability to produce golden eggs—ideas. Your golden ideas are produced in the imagination factory of your gold mind (*read here to learn how to utilise your imagination superpower).
But how often are you using your imagination to produce golden ideas? What’s stopping you?
You see, you already have what you’re looking for; and when you tap into your gold mine, you’ll discover a rich vein of ideas that, when utilised, will help you solve problems and find solutions to achieve your worthy goals.
#2: Your Abilities and Skillsets
Are you aware of all your abilities and skillsets? How many of your abilities are dormant and unused?
Recently, a fox decided to pay a visit to my chickens. I have a property on several acres in the hills of Adelaide, South Australia, in which we allow our chickens to roam free-range around the house and garden. Not too far, mind you, because foxes, snakes and ferral cats enjoy the company of chickens too.
On the day the fox came, one of the chickens learned a skill it didn’t know it had—it could fly.
When the fox charged out of the bushes, the frightened chickens sprinted in all directions as if their life depended on it. It did.
The fox took a liking to one particular chicken and sprinted for it across the grass in a blur of orange. The chicken, barely managing to keep just ahead of the fox’s snapping jaws, suddenly came to the end of the garden where it abruptly dropped in a steep slope to the bottom of the hill. With nowhere to go, it did the only thing it could: it took off into the vacant airspace like a strike-fighter FA-18 Hornet taking off from an aircraft carrier. And stricken with fear, it kept flapping and flying as if it were the most natural thing for a chicken to do.
It flew 60 metres down the hill to a pine tree, where it took refuge from the fox and waited for me to come and collect it and bring it back to the safety of the coop. The fox went to its den hungry that evening.
When I reflected on that incident, it occurred to me that humans are not too unlike chickens—we don’t use our innate skills and abilities until we absolutely have to.
Sometimes, we don’t even know we have those skills and abilities, and it takes a frightening or life-threatening incident to realise what we can actually do.
But why wait for such extreme measures to reveal your hidden abilities?
You already have what you’re looking for, and when you ask it will be given to you; when you seek, you will find; and when you knock, the door will be opened to you.
#3: Your Talents and Gifts
In my book, It’s Up To You! Why Most People Fail to Live the Life they Want and How to Change It, I discuss how your talent is the gift you were born with.
But for a great many of us, being ‘gifted’ is not something we believe we are. We usually associate a gift or incredible talent to others, usually something we consider the reserve of famous actors, writers or sportspeople. It’s not something we normally attribute to ourselves.
Every mother knows that her baby is born with a personality. No two babies come into this world, even from the same mother, with identical personalities. That personality is then moulded in the environment and everyday experiences of childhood and teenage years, and later refined in adulthood.
Talents are like personalities—they come as part of the package when you enter into this world.
Everyone is born with a talent, something they are naturally good at. Here are some talents and gifts that you might identify with:
- The gift of storytelling or playing a musical instrument.
- Understanding numbers or languages.
- A natural talent for sport.
- A talent for acting, dancing or writing.
- Technical or scientific talents.
- The gift of empathy and understanding.
- Creative talents.
- Seeing patterns in nature.
The list of talents is long and varied. Your talents, though, are more than just the result of good genes. They are also not the result of what you have learned through your schooling and environment. Talents transcend genetics and location.
When nurtured with intent and effort, they are the seeds within you that grow into strong skillsets which can, over time, be mastered.
#4: Your Valuable Time
Your mind and your time are your most valuable assets. How you think is your most valuable inner asset, and how you spend time is your most valuable external asset. People who are effective and successful utilise their mind and their time to their maximum capabilities.
Time is more valuable than money. Why? Because, where you can always bank more money, you cannot bank more time.
Time is the medium from which money flows and grows, not the other way around: time does not flow from money, and no matter how much money you have you cannot buy yourself more time.
This is because your time is a finite and diminishing asset, which makes it extraordinarily valuable. So you shouldn’t spend time to save money; rather spend money to save time.
But whereas most people see the benefits of having a household or business budget, many do not implement the same care or accountability with their time. They budget their income and expenditure, but they don’t budget their time.
Instead, they waste time or they ‘kill’ time. This is not how successful people utilise their time. They are good time managers. They don’t waste time or kill time, instead they find ways to create more time for themselves and devote to the things they want to do and achieve.
Likewise, if your intent is to increase your effectiveness and achieve your worthy goal, good time-management is essential.
Yet, the best time-managers are the best self-managers. The passage of time is beyond control—irrespective of anything you do, time keeps flowing.
What you can control, however, is how you manage yourself in the time that you have.
“Time management is somewhat a misnomer as time passes without regard to what we do; the only thing we can manage is ourselves.” ~ Wikipedia.org
Good time-management, therefore, is about good self-management.
A great time-management (and self-management) technique is to ask: Where does my time go now?
This is best achieved through a two-step process:
- Time Audit: To find out where you are spending your time now a good idea is to keep a time log for 2-4 days. Write down in half-hour blocks what you have been doing over the past 24-hours. The results will surprise you.
- Identify Time Thieves: The second thing to do is to eliminate time-stealers and time-wasters. The best way to do this is to make a list of your time-stealers and time-wasters at home and at work. The time audit will help you immensely with this. Then write down 1 time-waster that you are committed to eliminating in your life in the next week, and how you will achieve this.
SCOPE: Courage & Confidence Summary
The second step to broaden your SCOPE, and thus transform your failures into success, is to develop your courage and confidence, and this you do by:
- #1: Identifying Your Worthy Cause—your ‘I am’: When you know what you want to achieve, you know what you must become.
- #2: Maintain and Sustain Your Persistence—your ‘I will’: Set yourself a mountain to climb, plan and prepare, put one foot ahead of the other, and keep going.
- #3: Knowing Your Value (Self-Worth)—your ‘I can’: Invest the assets of your mind, abilities, talents, and time and maximise your rate of return.
Get started. Keep going. Renew and grow.
This article is an excerpt from Dr. Scott Zarcinas’ upcoming book, The SCOPE of YOU!
Why Success in Anything You Do Depends on Your SCOPE (and Your Failure Too)