The other day I was reading from a book called 212° The Extra Degree. I found the whole thought very mind provoking so I would like to share the idea with you here.
The whole idea is based on the idea that water boils at 100°C or 212°F. The difference in one degree, from 211°F and 212°F can mean the difference between something that is simply very hot and something that generates enough force to power a machine. This is a very simple idea and it should feed our every endeavor. This idea should consistently push us to give the extra effort in every task, action and effort we undertake. 212° adheres to a scientific law, a natural law. It should serve as a reminder to us that seemingly small things that actually require a very small amount of extra effort can make a tremendous difference in your life.
Here are a few ideas of the “small things” that you can do in your life that can make a huge difference over time.
As a Professional
- Take 10 minutes each day and do some form of personal development. This could be reading personal development books, listening to a personal development cd on your drive to or from work or both. It could also be as simple as reading my blog since I am doing the dirty work for you. Over a years time, this will be the equivalent of one full work week of developing your most valuable asset…you.
- Organize your workspace so you spend less time looking for something you can’t find. The time you spend now will pay dividends down the road. It will also make you feel better about yourself.
- Make a calender of the birthday of everyone you work with. Take the time to make sure and wish them a “Happy Birthday” on their birthday.
- Find at least one thing positive that someone you work with does each day and complement them on it. A compliment can go a long way.
In Your Personal Life
- Choose to talk to two additional friends each week. Take the time to ask how their life is going and really listen to what they are saying. This will lead to over 100 additional friends you make a connection with each year.
- Find something you can do in your community to volunteer. Set a specific time each week and devote that time to giving back to your community.
- Call your mom and dad at least once a week and tell them how much you love them. They brought you into this world and loved you when you had not amounted to much yet. Be sure to let them know you are thankful for that.
- Take the time to get to know at least one stranger a week. This could be a homeless person you see on the street, or someone you are standing in line with. That would mean meeting 100 new people a year. You can never know enough people.
- Find a mentor. Find someone who does something you love to do better than you and ask them to share what they know with you. Take the time to meet with them weekly. Their insight will take you to places you never knew you could go.
- Be a mentor. Find someone that you can pass what you know unto someone else. Someone who could really use your help in their life. It can make all the difference in their life.
In Your Spiritual Life
I do want to say that I was hesitant to make this a separate category because I feel that this is by far, the most important area of your life you should focus on. It is hard to try to categorize this because your spiritual life should be integrated into every aspect of your life professionally and personally.
- Take 15 minutes each day to read a bible. If you don’t have a bible-get one. If you can’t afford one-let me know and I will buy you one. This is simply put, the greatest self development, guide to living your life book that has ever existed. Everything you could ever need to know about living a full life is in this book. If the book seems too big and imposing to you, I would recommend the following areas to start. The book of Proverbs. There is 31 chapters in this book and there are 31 days in most months. This makes this perfect to read a chapter of the corresponding Proverb to the day of the month it is. Another area is to go to Psalms and read one Psalm a day. Another good place to start is to read through the Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, John). This narrative tells the story of Jesus’ life here on earth.
- Take the time to pray. Set a time right when you wake up first thing in the morning or right before you go to bed each night. It is important to have daily communication with God if you want to have a relationship with Him.
- Find a church you are comfortable with and attend there regularly. Not all churches are the same. Take the time to find one you are comfortable in. Getting a great message (sermon) on the weekend, can carry with you and lead you through your week.
- Get involved in a bible study or small group. This will allow you to develop a closer relationship with people who are living a godly life and trying to do the right things. It will also help you learn more about what God’s purpose is for you in your life.
- Find an accountability partner. This is someone you can be totally honest with. This is someone who will tell you what you need to hear and not what you want to hear. It is important to have someone who will keep you accountable for doing what you say will do.
Hopefully you will find some of these ideas helpful. If you don’t like any of these, come up with some of your own. The important thing is to identify some “little things” that you can do in your life. They will make a huge difference over time and set you miles ahead of where you ever thought you could go.