Saturday, July 30, 2011
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Saturday, July 2, 2011
My father always used to tell me if I would watch my pennies, then the dollars would take care of themselves. I don’t think I really understood what he meant when he repeated that old adage, but I did start, from a young age, picking up free pennies off the ground as I walked, and still do. I realize now that that is probably not what he meant. Maybe partly, in a "cents."
If you are looking for perfection in a blog, in writing, or anything else that Relax Max has his imprint on, you will be disappointed. I strive mostly to inform, amuse, even share my learnings on occasion, but perfection is something I have given up on long ago.
It strikes me as paradoxical, therefore, (some might say hilarious) that I spend much of my time, both hobby-wise and income-wise, in troubleshooting systems and describing theories for improvement in the way things are now, or in the way things are being done. You can chalk that up to my personality type.
In the process of defining or describing excellence, or in interpreting what the systematic path to success in a thing might be, it is usually necessary to first describe the current state of affairs, point out shortcomings and tell how one thinks the current status quo falls short of excellence. Only then can one put forth a vision for improvement.
Perfection might never be achieved, but one should always strive for excellence to the degree possible. When one person doesn’t take pride in his work in the assemblyline of life, the entire operation is degraded and will fall short of what it could have been. This is true if one is putting nuts on automobile wheel bolts as they pass by; it is true of individual members of a symphony orchestra; and it is true of armies and governments.
My old Air Force basic training sergeant explained this philosophy more succinctly: "Americans don't do half-assed work." Well, they didn't used to, anyway. Would you rise above the crowd? Then don't do half-assed work.
Since I am primarily a big-picture kind of person, it is especially hard for me to make myself pay attention to the dtails in life that form that big-picture, but we simply must try to make each small contribution we make to the larger whole as perfect and excellent as we possibly can. In all things, try to care.