As most of my readers know, I returned from a trip to Israel last month. There were several things that were eye-opening there, but one thing in particular intrigued me, and that was the use of natural resources across the entire country. Everywhere I looked, and I mean everywhere, there were solar water heaters on every residential roof (pictured here). While Israel has a lot of things going for it, one thing remains constant, its wicked hot and hardly ever cloudy. The sun beats down like a laser beam on their land, and they decided to channel that resource and make use of it on a mass scale.
Now, I won’t get into politics or the policy behind solar power, but it’s this industriousness, this resourcefulness, that we should all try to replicate in ourselves in order to improve our jobs, our financial situations, and our lives. This means going back to the foundations of your natural skills and building upon them. Furthermore, it’s important to note the distinction between having resources and USING resources.
How you can use best use the resources at your disposal? First you have to identify them. Now, I am not able to write a post for each individual that will read this, but there are some inherent resources that all of us have, and all of us can improve upon in ourselves.
- Time – Yes, time is limited, but it is the most abundant resource we have. You can choose how you spend your time and how you spend it can reap dividends for your sense of self and for your future. Now, there are a lot of people that feel there aren’t enough hours in the day. To them, I ask if their time management is optimized. I know some people that really do have every day and every minute mapped out, but most of us do not. By managing our time better or combining tasks we can cut hours of waste or redundancy from our day allowing us to spend those extra hours on more meaningful or more relaxing activities.
- Wits – Some people are wittier than others, but that doesn’t mean you can’t improve upon this resource that everyone has. Everyone can become a better problem solver, everyone can think a bit faster on their feet given practice. You can cultivate your wits through puzzles, games, or just practice in every day life scenarios. There is nothing more attractive to an employer or a client than someone who is a good problem solver and someone who is able to stay composed under pressure.
- Charm – Humans are sociable creatures. Everyone has a sense of charm about him or her. If you are a friendly person but bad at remembering people’s names, improve on that. If you are bad at meeting people, put yourself in new situations that may provide you with new relationships. I truly believe everyone has something to offer, and if this was not the case then none of us would have ever had a job, been in a relationship, etc. To get ahead, a person can channel their charm into building new and mutually beneficial relationships.
Now, lets tie this all together. Most people say the best resource to have is “Personal Contacts”. I couldn’t agree more. The expression, “its not what you know, but who you know” has echoed true for too many people to be ignored. However, no one wakes out of bed in the morning and all of a sudden has these types of contacts. It takes relationship building (charm), it takes showing your value (wits) and it takes effort to maintain these relationships (time).
We each inherently have the natural resources to improve our career, our finances and our lives. It’s just a matter of focusing those resources to benefit us in an impactful way.
I want to give a quick shout out to Baker as his post on resourcefulness had me thinking about all of this while in Israel.