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Labor Day Reflections from the Surf – Having Passion and Persistence at Work

Lee Ellis and his wife, Mary, enjoyed some time at the beach during Labor Day Weekend 2012.

This past week, my speaking schedule ended in Jacksonville, Florida. Coming into Labor Day weekend, it seemed like a perfect time to hold up at the beach for some much needed R & R.  Mary and I are enjoying a good ocean breeze, looking out at the Atlantic, listening to the roaring surf and the joyous squeals of young children as they scurry ahead of the incoming waves.   

“Some would say that I just love to work—and that is true, I’m action-oriented. But, it’s also true that I’ve been able to work in my areas of passion and that has made so much of a difference.”

Working in My Passion

As we sat on the beach, I reflected on how blessed I had been to love my work throughout three different careers.  Some would say that I just love to work—and that is true, I’m action-oriented. But, it’s also true that I’ve been able to work in my areas of passion and that has made so much of a difference. In my second career I was able to help others find their passion, and to some degree I get to do that today as I work with leaders and help them develop and develop their people.  There is no greater labor for a leader than to develop people.  The payoff is better results and higher performance with greater commitment and the joy of being part of something that is growing in a positive direction.

Persistence in Life and Work

My reflections then turned to the amazing persistence of the surf; the waves never stop coming. By nature I’m not so persistent.  I prefer to start something and move on.  It was only in the confines of a dark and dismal cell as a POW that I learned to stay focused and finish what I started.

Persistence is important in every endeavor.  Whether it’s finishing your homework, completing school, working late to finish a project, or “finishing the drill” in sports, winners persist to the point of sacrifice in order to achieve their goals.  My teachers from high school would be amazed to know that I finished and published three books. It was only because I learned to keep moving forward, like the waves that never stop. The lesson of persistence is evident in nature and in every area of success. Think of the Olympic champions, think of the single moms who raise great kids, remember Abraham Lincoln who lost 7 elections, but became one of our greatest presidents. The examples are everywhere.

“My teachers from high school would be amazed to know that I finished and published three books. It was only because I learned to keep moving forward, like the waves that never stop.”

If you are facing a difficult challenge right now, be it financial, needing a good job, or a leadership crisis at work, don’t give in.  Work through it and let your persistence be like the waves that keep coming.  Every day, do your duty, whatever that is, to move toward your goal and don’t quit until you have the victory that you are looking for. 

Oh, don’t forget that unlike the waves, we humans need rest and relaxation, so I hope that you got some rest this past weekend as you take time away to enjoy the fruits of your labor. 

LE

0 Comments on “Labor Day Reflections from the Surf – Having Passion and Persistence at Work

Richard Krohn
September 5, 2012 at 8:46 am

Leon…I too have have been blessed with a career that provided me the honor of doing what I do best and do it with passion. I am a 24 year AF veteran who got the chance to get a BS while in the server and an MS while working as a government contractor after. Although I am now unemployed (for the first time in 38 years) and optimistic that I will find true value again in my new employment, using my God given talents to provide for my family and work again with passion and joy. Thank you for your uplifting comments and continued success in your speaking engagements.
Richartd

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Lee Ellis
September 5, 2012 at 11:07 am

Richard – thanks for your comments. There is a specific place for you to serve using your skills and talents. Your fear-free persistance will pay off! Please stay in touch with us. (WP Admin)

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