The Every Day Leader: Cowosophy

What would a farm be without cows?!   Bunches of them.  The dairy farm I grew up on was no different.  Turns out, cows need tending to daily.  If it rained the cows were muddy.  If they were out in the pasture they had to be herded in for milking.  Regardless, they needed to be cared for.

We were all expected to help.  If there was a blizzard, if it was pouring rain, or 100 plus degrees with a million flies around – the cows still had to be milked twice a day.  It didn’t matter if you wanted to go on vacation,  if there was a wedding, or a big event at school – the cows couldn’t wait.

Cows are like that.

I look back to the days of milking cows.  At the time, I didn’t like it.  Now, I am grateful for that life experience I had as a kid.  I am grateful for the lessons I learned about work ethic and responsibility.  And I am thankful for the lessons about caring for living animals, knowing they were dependent on you.

Life is like that.  The things we think are horrific at the time, don’t seem so terrible when we look back on them.  What we don’t see at the time is how those times are shaping and molding us into the people we are today.  It is during those hard times that our character is being developed.  These things help define who we are deep down.

It is almost as if I can hear my dad saying…”See, it wasn’t so bad!”

He would be right of course.  It wasn’t so bad.  I learned discipline.  I learned responsibility.  I learned the importance of doing what you said you were going to do.  I learned that if I didn’t – things and others suffered.  I learned to work as a team.  I even learned how to laugh together in the midst of the work. Flies and all.

These are life lessons I now cherish.  Memories I often wish I could have given my own children.  These are things I am thankful for.

We all have past experiences.  Have you forgotten?  Are you able to live in such a way to reflect what you have learned?  Those life lessons are a gift, a gift to be thankful for.  

Everyday leaders see and are thankful for life experiences.  Those experiences that were good and those that were difficult.  Everyday leaders intentionally live in such a way that their lives reflect  the gift of the lessons learned.

 

 

 

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The Every Day Leader: Beep. Beep. Beep…

Beep. Beep. Beep……

I won’t look… it can wait.

My thoughts immediately wonder… what if it is something important?

The temptation often proves too great and I look at my cell phone to read the text. I can be sitting in a meeting, maybe even lounging with family and I hear it.  I am wondering who it is, what is going on, and whether it is something I need to respond to.   I am immediately distracted and my attention is immediately divided.  Today’s generation of kids – my kids– are a generation that have their cell phones on them at all times…. It is like it is an extra appendage!

I wondered… when in the world did I become the same way?

Is undivided attention something that is a thing of the past?  Do we even remember how to be totally engaged with others anymore?

Where are you?

What are you doing?

Are you focused?

Do you pay attention?

Each moment you are with another, are you engaged? 

Are you present? 

Are we talking with them and actively listening?

What kind of life are we really living?

Be present NOW.

As everyday leaders it is up to us to purposely live with others.  To think with them, talk with them, to listen to them, to love them, and to let them KNOW we care.

What does this look like?

It means savoring every moment you have, without being distracted or multitasking.  It means that those you are with know you care enough to give them all of your attention. It is being intentional and behaving in ways that show that moments matter. 

Every day leaders, intentionally engaging in the moment to make a difference in the lives of others.