Do You Sharpen Your Axe?

A young man approached the foreman of a logging crew and asked for a job.

“That depends,” replied the foreman. “Let’s see you fell this tree.” The young man stepped forward and skillfully felled a great tree. Impressed, the foreman exclaimed, “You can start Monday.”

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday rolled by. Thursday afternoon the foreman approached the young man and said, “You can pick up your paycheck on the way out today.”

Startled, the young man replied, “I thought you paid on Friday.”

“Normally we do,” said the foreman. “But we’re letting you go today because you’ve fallen behind. Our daily felling charts show that you’ve dropped from first place on Monday to last place today.”

“But I’m a hard worker,” the young man objected. “I arrive first, leave last and even have worked through my coffee breaks!”

The foreman, sensing the young man’s integrity, thought for a minute and then asked, “Have you been sharpening your axe?”

The young man replied, “No, sir, I’ve been working too hard to take time for that!”

 How do you sharpen your axe?  Think of what and who can sharpen your axe – mentors, books, CD’s and DVD’s, your spouse, family, prayer, and even exercise.  When do you sharpen your axe? What routine is needed to get the most of your efforts?   Build the habit of routine sharpening in order to make your efforts as effective as possible.