Skipper Trick #4: Tap Your Guts
Skippers excel at tough choices, at sticking their necks out. These acts include battle charges and life changes, and though they’re far from easy, they’re soon done. Not so the little choices.
Each day, you face the simple, almost thoughtless choices of whether to start your work once you arrive at your desk, whether to put off that project that doesn’t have a deadline again, whether to let your little one watch Thomas the Tank Engine right after he gets up because you’re tired or to be a playful dad–easy decisions, right? Conceptually, maybe. But these are discipline choices, not gut decisions. Which brings us to Skipper Trick #3: Tap Your Guts.
By tapping your guts, you make each minor decision feel like a major one, and it becomes more valuable to you. Because it is valuable, and you know it. In fact, if an act isn’t part of your family’s goals, then it’s either recreation or waste. Some recreation is good, but it should fit in with family goals. Therefore, if it’s not waste, it’s valuable. So your goal is to value the little decisions.
So how do you tap your guts? Well, you follow the trick.
- Look at the war. Your little choice is not a world-changer right? It’s not the whole war–it’s hardly even a battle. But it is. Look at any war. It was won by several key battles. The battles were won by several commanders. Those commanders depended on unique soldiers. Those soldiers depended on their weapons. Those weapons depended on being cleaned and properly stored. The whole war depends on soldiers choosing to clean their weapons and a hundred other tiny, insignificant decisions. See where this is going? See your little decision in its place in the big war. This opens your guts to tapping.
- Listen to the battle speech. The great battle speeches of history focus on the importance of…you guessed it…the coming battle. They inspire. Find something that inspires you to charge. If you’ve got nothing, enjoy the Robert Burns poem below. This is the actual guts-tapping.
- Approach your weapon. And clean that sucker, knowing that you’ve got the guts to face this little thing, because that’s what makes you a great soldier.
A Speech for Scots
This Robert Burns poem takes the voice of Robert the Bruce as he admonishes his soldiers to be brave before the Battle of Bannockburn. Credit goes to RobertBurns.org for the transcription as well as the translation of Scotch words. Be inspired.
Robert Bruce’s March To Bannockburn