9 January 1967, New Castle (PA) News, “Strictly Personal” by Sydney J. Harris, pg. 4, col. 6:
How to tell a Winner from a Loser:
A winner says, “Let’s find out”; a loser says, “Nobody knows.”
When a winner makes a mistake, he says, “I was wrong”; when a loser makes a mistake, he says, “It wasn’t my fault.”
A winner credits his “good luck” for winning—even though it isn’t good luck; a loser blames his “bad luck” for losing—even though it isn;t bad luck.
A winner knows how and when to say “Yes” and “No”; a loser says, “Yes, but” and “Perhaps not” at the wrong times, for the wrong reasons.
A winner isn’t nearly as afraid of losing as a loser is secretly afraid of winning.
A winner works harder than a loser, and has more time; a loser is always “too busy” to do what is necessary.
A winner goes through a problem; a loser goes around it, and never gets past it.
A winner makes commitments; a loser makes promises.
Here we go again. We have choices to make. Do we choose to be a winner, or do we choose to be a loser.? Yes. In the USA as of the day (December 19, 2022) this article was written, we do have the choice. I hope we will always have the choice!
How are you at commitments? Are you a better “promiser” or “committer?” Let’s see how Dr. Maxwell’s book MAKE TODAY COUNT and his chapter, “Commitment” can help you be what a leader needs to be – a “committer.”
In the last 57 years of life, one of the greatest commitments I have made is – “I do.” Those two words to my beautiful wife, Diana, are the most important phrase I have said! “I do.”
Before I even knew Dr. Maxwell, I had experienced his quote: If something is worth doing, I will commit myself to carrying it through. I continue to do what I can to keep this commitment of marriage. And, to be honest as always, I understand that this commitment can be broken. Just that understanding (commitment can be broken) alone keeps me intentional in being committed to the phrase, “I do.”
“You’ve heard the old saying that motion causes friction.”
If you are married, I am sure you have had motion in your marriage that has caused friction! The days you (husband) didn’t pick-up your clothes was motion that caused friction. The times you (husband) didn’t phone home informing your wife you would be late from work was motion that caused friction. The times when you (wife) did not have dinner ready. When both of you (husband / wife) argued about how to respond to your child’s struggles at school or even social issues caused by TikTok / social media! There is plenty of motion that will cause friction. Now, what do we do?
You need to make the decision to make and keep proper commitments daily. Begin to by doing the following: Counting the Cost; Determine to Pay the Price; Always Strive for Excellence. As with the previous articles outlining this wonderful gem of a little book (MAKE TODAY COUNT), I will focus on one and encourage you to buy the book to clearly be introduced to the other answers.
Determine to Pay the Price – I am going to change this to “Determine to Sacrifice.” There is little doubt that every commitment is going to come with a price or sacrifice. Correct? I use marriage as THE most important commitment I have made. When one gets married, one loses freedom. Ya can’t stay in a healthy marriage by cheating your spouse. There is a loss of freedom to how many women I may be with. I am committed to one woman, oppose to having the freedom to be with an unlimited number of women. I have made the decision that I am going to be faithful to Diana. I am also looking at many, MANY decisions being made not just for me, but also for Diana. We are a team. I can’t just go out and spend money on what I want. So, there is a price / a sacrifice of being an “individual.” I also answer to Diana. I am part of TEAM EVERTS.
Managing the Discipline of Commitment
Using the decision to marry Diana (have been married since March 30, 1991), I need to – every day – renew my commitment and think about the benefits that come from being married to Diana, keeping the commitment.
As you strive to keep your commitments daily, keep the following in mind:
- Expect Commitment to Be a Struggle
- Don’t Rely on Talent Alone
- Focus on Choices, Not Conditions.
- Be Single-minded
- Do What’s Right Even When You Don’t Feel Like It
We will focus on: Don’t Rely on Talent Alone. Direct quote from MAKE TODAY COUNT.
If you want to reach your potential, you need to add a strong work ethic to your talent. Poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow shared much insight when he wrote:
The heights by great men reached and kept
Were not attained by sudden flight,
But they, while their companions slept,
Were toiling upward in the night.
If you want something out of your day, you must put something in it. Your talent is what God put in before you were born. Your skills are what you put in yesterday. Commitment is what you must put in today in order to make today your masterpiece and make tomorrow a success.
So, for those who are married (and frankly, even if you are not married, are you a good friend? Good friends make commitments to their friendships), what are you doing daily – yes, daily – to show you are committed to your spouse? I say, “I love you” EVERY DAY! When there is an important decision (job related / financial / health / etc.) to be made, before I make the decision, I speak to Diana. By communicating with Diana, I truly believe that is a sign of commitment to our marriage. Make the commitment to the marriage, not to your needs or you wife’s needs. What does the marriage need? Commit to the marriage! If you are not married, keep your friendships on a level that shows commitment / pay the price / sacrifice. Your friendship is more important than your individual needs and your friends’ individual needs. Yes. Please do not let yourself be ‘used’ by your friend. Be aware of what sacrifices you are making to keep the friendship. The first friendship is with you! You need to be your “best friend.” For me, my best friend is JESUS CHRIST. When I am in ‘line’ with Jesus, I feel awesome! Please know … we (my company) are committed to help people be better – not perfect. Better.
Make Today Count by keeping your commitments and when you fall short of a commitment, keep the commitment to you and God by admitting your mistakes / weaknesses / poor choices.
I hope this has helped one person. Please consider buying MAKE TODAY COUNT. Dr. Maxwell does a wonderful job presenting his material. Make Today Count: The Secret of Your Success Is Determined by Your Daily Agenda: Maxwell, John C.: 8601404837890: Amazon.com: Books
Also, I am a certified TRAINER / SPEAKER / COACH using Dr. Maxwell’s material. Our goal is: BETTER PEOPLE MAKE BETTER LEADERS. Contact us and let’s set-up a time to give you some proven material / seminar. One-for-one. I love working with groups as well. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org