John C Maxwell is one of the most recognized names in the leadership development field. His book, Make Today Count: The Secret of Your Success Is Determined by Your Daily Agenda, is a worthy contribution, earning a place in any leader’s bookshelf.
Maxwell’s key points:
The 12 Areas of Focus for Success
This book teaches that the secret of one’s success is how one lives each day. Maxwell divides the things that deserve our attention into 12 things he calls his daily dozen. They include Attitude, Priorities, Health, Family, Thinking, Commitment, Finances, Faith, Relationships, Generosity, Values and Growth. For each of these a small chapter focuses on their importance, how to address them in goals setting and follow through and how to focus on them each day. The ultimate objective is to make the most of each day to accomplish what is important in your life.
At the end of each chapter Maxwell lists the key decision you should make today to improve in the particular area covered by that chapter and the daily discipline you can use to stay on top of things.
Focus on Today
Maxwell’s focus is that today is what you can act upon. You cannot do anything about yesterday and tomorrow is not yet here. Only today can be changed. At the same time Maxwell teaches that change and improvement in one’s life does not occur instantly. Success comes one day at a time; it is a process. However it will only come about if we make the most of each of those “one day at a time”.
To implement the success ideas that Maxwell teaches requires daily discipline. As Maxwell says you can play now and pay later or you can pay now and play later. Either way you are going to pay, but by paying today through hard work and discipline you get to play a whole lot more later on.
He also suggests a simple formula for what you should do to make each day lead to ultimate success. You can make good decisions without daily discipline which will lead to a plan with no payoff. You can have daily discipline with no good decisions and you will get regimentation with no reward. However, if you match good decisions with daily discipline you come away with a Masterpiece of Potential.
Maxwell suggests nothing less than making meaningful progress in each of the 12 areas he discusses every day. He hopes you won’t find that discouraging. It is the price you must pay to truly transform your life for success. I can tell you from my own experience that if you can give some thought and effort to each of these twelve areas each day you will truly surprise yourself with what you achieve.
This book will be very useful to anyone seeking to improve their level of achievement on a daily basis.
The book is generally well written. It is concise. He gives good illustrations and uses short paragraphs and outline form subheadings. The writing is dense – there is a lot to absorb in each page.
Three Great Ideas You Can Use:
1. The importance of decisions and discipline: the importance of setting goals and making plans and the equal importance of following through and acting on those goals.
2. Attitude will not take care of itself; it must be tended to daily.
3. Marriage is not easy. Family is not easy. Life is not easy. Expect problems, stay committed and develop strategies for getting through the difficult times.
Publication Information: Copyright: 2004 John C Maxwell. Published by Center Street / Hachette Book Group USA
General Rating: Excellent.
Daniel R Murphy has studied what makes people successful for over 30 years. He writes on this and related subjects in his weekly newsletter, Creating True Wealth, available free at www.books2wealth.com, on his blog, www.CTWBlog.com and in articles published on the web. Educating people for building wealth, adapting to a changing future and personal development.
Daniel R Murphy | Make Today Count by John C Maxwell