My wife tagged me in the above Instagram photo after we discussed what books we were planning to take to the beach. I was being ambitious, overalls ambitious as I usually am, and I decided to take the 1,000 page biography, Washington: A Life. I think I got to read about six chapters. My wife faired a little better. She finished the half of the book she was currently reading. I didn’t get as much reading done as I would have liked to have completed on my week off but the biography has been excellent so far.
Washington’s biography had me thinking about my own life and career. It made me think about how everybody wants to have everything. We want the money. We want success. But how many of us actually want to work for it. Many talk the talk but far less walk the walk.
In only the first few chapters of Washington’s biography, you can see how he eventually became the leader of the America army and our first president. Anyone who’s interested in eventually leading people and furthering their career take away a number of lessons from young Washington’s early career.
Washington understand a few things very well. He understood the power of learning from your mistakes. He was afraid to admit he was wrong and change his mind when faced with convincing evidence. He understood the importance of relationships and networking. Washington would repeatedly find mentors and figure out everything he could learn from them. He also realized the importance of education. Lastly, he believed he would be successful. He acted and even dressed the part.
I’m not close to finishing this large book. Actually, this will be the longest book I’ve ever completed. I can’t wait to see if the rest of the book will be filled with as much insight as the first six chapters.
Even though as parents you may not get as much time as you would like to read and write doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try to do them at all. False optimism isn’t a bad thing. I might not have finished my book but the time I did spend reading made bringing my chair well worth the effort.