Discipline vs. Punishment

Many people cringe when they see the word "discipline" because they are confusing discipline with punishment. Discipline is something you do for someone; punishment is something you do to someone.

Discipline is the missing quality in many people's lives. Individuals who have never been disciplined consequently do not know how to discipline ...Read more

Is Motivation Permanent?

Many times, I'm asked the question "Is motivation permanent?" and my standard response is "No, but then, neither is bathing." However, in view of a recent letter I received, I'm going to change my answer to "No, motivation is not permanent, but the impact can be permanent, depending on what the motivation is."

For example, several years ago, ...Read more

Your Opinion, My Opinion

A friend of mine frequently says that "everyone is entitled to his own opinion -- but no one is entitled to the wrong facts." Yet it seems to be universally true that confidence seems to go with ignorance; the less we know, in many cases, the more dogmatic we are in our statements.

I love the observations that Lawrence Fargher makes ...Read more

An Interlude With a Message

Several years ago, on a cold, drizzly morning, I was working in my office, when I heard a strange noise in the chimney. After several minutes, my wife heard it too and thought it might be a bird or a squirrel. I realized it was a bird and that it was trapped, so I opened the damper, and in a few minutes, the bird made his appearance on the ...Read more

Look and Relax

We live in a stressful world, and stress has been identified as a prime health culprit. It reduces productivity and often brings illnesses -- including high blood pressure and palpitations of the heart. The experts tell us we should relax, but the question is: how?

You might not be able to relax where you are at the moment, so a short walk to...Read more

Stretching the Soul

"I was just a kid," said Mr. Sharpe. "One spring day, Father called me to go with him to Old Man Trussell's blacksmith shop. He had left a rake and a hoe to be repaired. And there they were, ready and fixed like new. Father handed over a silver dollar for the repairing, but Mr. Trussell refused to take it. 'No,' he said. 'There's no charge for...Read more

Teaching by Parable

The parable has always been my favorite method of teaching. The reason is simple: People remember the story, and when they remember the story, they remember the lesson the story provided. As an example, the greatest storyteller of all time, the Carpenter from Galilee, told parable after parable. Incidentally, two-thirds of them had to do with ...Read more

We All Live in a Small Town

Chances are excellent that when you read the heading on this column, you thought to yourself, "Man, what's he talking about? I live in Chicago, New York or Los Angeles! That's not a small town!" You're right. However, in every big city there are lots of "small towns." The place you work, the neighborhood in which you live, the local church, ...Read more

Happiness Is ...

Many years ago, Abraham Lincoln said that most of us are about as happy as we make up our minds to be.

Somewhat more recent studies done by David Meyers of Hope College in Holland, Mich., and Ed Dyner of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, indicate that happy people have four things in common: First, they have a support system. ...Read more

The Truth About Family Values

One of the ongoing discussions we hear is that of family values. There are some who try to identify them; others say there are no established family values.

The reason people have been unable to isolate and identify family values, in my opinion, is very simple: There are no "family" values because the values that make for a strong family are ...Read more

You Can Make a Difference

In March of 1993, a 14-year-old student from Haltom City, Texas, killed a policeman and seriously wounded three of his neighbors. In the exchange of gunfire, he was killed.

There has been much speculation about this tragedy. Outwardly, things seemed normal. His father was on the police force. They were a middle-class, law-abiding family. The ...Read more

The 80/20 Rule

In the early 1900s, Vilfredo Pareto, an Italian engineer-economist-sociologist, developed what he called the "80/20 rule." His research indicated that in a business, 20 percent of the items accounted for 80 percent of the business and that roughly 20 percent of the population controlled roughly 80 percent of its wealth.

Since then, others ...Read more

The Driving Range

This afternoon, it was my privilege to hit some golf balls. It was extremely windy, and wind play is the weakest part of my game. Recently, our head pro, Eldridge Miles, one of America's truly great teaching pros and a genuine "people person," taught me how to hit a "knock-down" shot, designed especially to solve that problem.

My excitement ...Read more


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