Success Monday: Are You the Carpenter of Your Life? Build Wisely

Keith Rosen, the CEO of Profit Builders, a management, sales and executive training company, offers a ton of advice and inspiration on his website. Here’s a column he wrote that was under the “goals” section of his website.

“Who Built Your Life-House? We often build our lives in a distracted way; living from a place of reaction rather than intention. Here’s a parable that illustrates how you can choose to respond to the events in your life in the most positive and productive way, and build the ideal home you want to live in. Think of yourself as the carpenter. This is the only life you will ever build.

An elderly carpenter was ready to retire. He told his employer of his plans to leave the house-building business and live a more leisurely life with his wife, enjoying his family. He would miss the paycheck, but he needed to retire. They could get by.

The contractor was sorry to see his best contractor retire. He asked him if he could build just one more house as a personal favor. The carpenter said yes, but in time it was easy to see that his heart was not in his work.

He resorted to shoddy workmanship and used inferior materials. It was an unfortunate way to end his career.

When the carpenter finished his work and the builder came to inspect the house, the builder handed the front door key to his carpenter.

“This is your house,” he said. “My gift to you.”

What a shock! What a shame! If only the carpenter had known he was building his own house, he would have done it all so differently. Now, he had to live in the poorly constructed home he had created. A home that was poorly built, devoid of quality and built without passion, care, heart and pride.

So it is with us. We often build our lives in a distracted way; living from a place of reaction rather than intention so you can choose to respond to the events in your life in the most positive and productive way. Unfortunately, due to daily pressure we often find ourselves just getting by and being comfortable with and accepting mediocrity, rather than doing our very best.  And when we encounter those defining moments in our lives, we do not always put forth our best effort.

Then, with the shock, we look at the situation we created and find that we are now living in the house we built. If only we had realized, we would have done it so differently.

Think of yourself as the carpenter. Think about your house called life. Each day you choose how you’ll build your foundation, lay a brick or hammer a nail. Build wisely. This is the only life you will ever build.

Even if you live it for only one day more, that day deserves to be lived graciously and with dignity, peace, joy and gratitude.

Your life today is the result of your attitude and choices made in the past. Your life tomorrow will be the result of your attitude and the choices you make today.

As a leader, the value of the work you do affects everyone around you. Doing your best means being your best you. However small, whatever the task, and as insignificant as you may think it is, complete it like it’s the most important thing you need to do. After all, that’s what you’re modeling for others, at work and at home.

Today, make the choice to show up as the person you want to be and live each day as the gift it is. That’s why life is always a, “Do it yourself” project.”

Keith Rosen, award-winning author and CEO of Profit Builders, which provides management training, sales coaching, executive coaching and sales training. He has been designated a Master Certified Coach by the International Coach Federation. For more information visit http://www.profitbuilders.com/.