Tag Archives: Benjamin Franklin

Time management

alarm-clock.jpgI am a mixed bag on time management.  Some things I do really well, which creates plenty of time to do a variety of things.  But then I’ll waste some of it because I’m not prioritizing well.  And by “waste” I don’t mean that it is bad to just do nothing sometimes and rest.  I mean that I end up doing things that aren’t that important, like TV or Internet surfing.

How is your time management?  Remember that if you aren’t doing what you say you want to do (Bible study, prayer, family time, reading, exercise, volunteering, etc.) it is because you consider that the least important thing you actually do is more important than the things you say you want to do.  You may not have those conscious thoughts, but it is an accurate assessment.

In other words, if you are not reading your Bible and praying daily it is because you have decided not to.

A couple of tactical things help me: The O-H-I-O (Only Handle It Once) approach to emails and tasks works well when I use it.  Instead of going over a message multiple times when I’m not sure how I want to handle it, I try to deal with it the first time (respond, file, etc.).

On the flip side, knowing when to carefully analyze a situation to anticipate consequences saves a lot of time at work.  As I like to say, I don’t like to overkill things but I do like to kill them.  By that I mean that I want to get it done right the first time and not have to waste time later because a “shortcut” left someone out of a communication loop.  Sometimes you have to “brake to go faster.”  The discernment to know when to do it is the key.

I also take a Zero-Based Budgeting approach and analyze all that I do.  I realized a while ago that watching sports took a lot of time and didn’t bring that much enjoyment anyway, so I’ve cut it out almost completely.  The Steelers won the game?  Release mild amount of endorphins.  The Steelers lost?  Great, I just wasted 3+ hours of my life.  That isn’t an indictment of sports watching.  If you aren’t consumed by the process and have a net enjoyment, or perhaps it is a family activity, then good for you.  But if watching your college team lose spoils your weekend then you have a problem.  (Friendly reminder: Those “student athletes” and pros some people worship probably don’t care about you at all and are likely to have vastly different worldviews.)

Consider these words then try this exercise by Randy Alcorn.

“Dost thou love life? Then do not squander time, for that is the stuff which life is made of.”

Over three thousand years before Benjamin Franklin said those words, Moses said these:

Teach us to number our days aright,
That we may gain a heart of wisdom. (Psalm 90:12)

The New Testament speaks the same message: “Redeem the time,” or “Make the most of every opportunity” (Colossians 4:5b).

Founders’ Fables – a terrific book to pass along key principles to children

A good friend of mine illustrated the book Founders’ Fables (his sister wrote it).  With easy to follow stories and catchy pictures, it teaches important principles held dear by the Founding Fathers and explains the concept and importance of limited government.

I bought a copy and was very impressed.

It is only $10 and would make a great gift for any child.  It would be great to have in public schools and I especially encourage home schoolers to get it.

From the web site:

What do Joe the Monkey, Benjamin Franklin, Holly the Hippo,
and Thomas Jefferson have in common?

They have all come together in this book to help explain our most treasured American values, based on the principles of our Founding Fathers and the concept of limited government. Through the use of funny and memorable characters, ten simple fables address these American values, often believed too complicated for kids to comprehend. Stories are introduced with a supporting quote from one of our nation’s founding fathers. Each fable is followed by age-appropriate questions and a short art activity to inspire your child to an even deeper understanding. Fun and colorful illustrations accompany each fable, written to appeal to children five years old and up. Through familiar quotations and a short biography, children will also become familiar with famous historical figures who played significant roles in the birth and early development of the United States.

Families concerned with maintaining our country’s conservative roots will want to commit these stories to heart, relating current events to the fables they will come to know and love.

Issues addressed in Founders’ Fables include:
  • National Debt and Future Generations
  • Private Enterprise and Government Intervention
  • Pork/Earmarking
  • Socialism
  • Eminent Domain
  • Outsourcing of American Businesses
  • Self-Reliance and Welfare
  • Government Intervention in Private Lives
  • Fairness Doctrine and Free Speech
  • Independence and Self-Reliance

Each fable is written in rhyme to encourage recall of the stories, and to appeal to a young child’s sense of rhythm and fun. Parents and teachers will agree that children have a fascination with rhyming stories and love to shout out the final rhyming word of each stanza. Many of us still remember every word of the rhyming books from our own childhood, and now share them with our own children…repeating them from memory and sharing in the love of those easily-recalled children’s stories. We hope Founders’ Fables will become a treasured part of your family’s library and tradition as well.

It’s never too early to instill a love and passion for the ideals of our Founding Fathers.
Prepare our future generation.
Encourage self-reliance.

Help preserve our heritage.