Accelerating Business Growth

Thursday, October 19, 2006

"How often do you MAKE time to STOP and just think?"

Today I’ve decided to share with you probably one of the most powerful personal development stories I've ever heard.

The Mexican Boatman…

An American investment banker was at the pier of a small coastal Mexican village when a small boat with just one fisherman docked. Inside the small boat were several large yellow-fin tuna. The American complimented the Mexican on the quality of his fish and asked how long it took to catch them.The Mexican replied, "Only a little while."The American then asked why didn't he stay out longer and catch more fish?The Mexican said he had enough to support his family's immediate needs.The American then asked, "But what do you do with the rest of your time?"The Mexican fisherman said, "I sleep late, fish a little, play with my children, take a siesta with my wife Maria, stroll into the village each evening where I sip wine and play guitar with my amigos – I have a full and busy life."The American scoffed, "I’m a Harvard MBA and could help you. You should spend more time fishing and with the proceeds, buy a bigger boat. With the proceeds from the bigger boat you could buy several boats, eventually you would have a fleet of fishing boats.

Instead of selling your catch to a middleman you would sell directly to the processor, eventually opening your own cannery.

You would control the product, processing and distribution.

You would need to leave this small coastal fishing village and move to Mexico City, then LA and eventually NYC where you will run your expanding enterprise."The Mexican fisherman asked, "But, how long will this all take?"To which the American replied, "15-20 years.""But what then?"The American laughed and said that's the best part. "When the time is right you would announce an IPO (Initial Purchase Offer) and sell your company stock to the public and become very rich, you would make millions.""Millions. Then what?"The American said, "Then you would retire, move to a small coastal fishing village where you would sleep late, fish a little, play with your kids, take a siesta with your wife Maria, stroll to the village in the evenings where you could sip wine and play your guitar with your amigos."

How I used the idea…

When I first read this story the light bulb came on!

It’s so easy to get caught up in the pace of life, becoming so busy, rushing around from one activity to the next, spinning multiple plates and not making the time to stop, sit back and think.

This story made me examine my goals and really think about the goals I’d set for myself and most importantly…why I wanted to achieve them.

Still today when I catch myself rushing from one place to the next and feel I’m loosing the balance in my life - a 30 second re focus, by reading this story helps me to put everything into perspective, and re address the scales of balance.

My suggestion…

Re read this story a few times. Take some 'quiet time' and examine your goals – some you might have already achieved, some you might decide are not worthy of your time and effort and those you decide to pursue will be the ones which you know will really make the difference and allow you to achieve precisely what you want out of life - both personally and professionally.


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