What is the difference between worrying and planning? What is the different between sulking and reflecting? Worrying and planning are both looking into the future; sulking and reflecting are both looking into the past.

The difference is control. Planning and reflecting are conscious, purposeful, and organized mental processes. Worrying and sulking are automatic, meaningless, and chaotic mental processes. In other words, you control planning and reflecting, but you don’t control worrying and sulking – they control you.

Whether you’re looking into the past or future, the key to positive thought is in your hand now. All thinking takes place in only the moment of now, and your thinking now creates a chain reaction extending into the future. Now you can think about what you want. What will you think about?

What does a lizard share in common with a thunderstorm? What does a paper clip share in common with the FBI? What does the tax code share in common with plankton? What do all of the above share in common with each other?

Every creature, event, object, organization, or process share two factors: a purpose and the means to reach that purpose. A lizard’s purpose is to survive and create other lizards, and a thunderstorm’s purpose is to relieve the pressure of condensation and air in the atmosphere. They are both given the biological or meteorlogical conditions and tools to accomplish their purpose.

What is the purpose of a person? To give to others and strive for character completion. What are the means to reach that purpose? A person’s intellect, emotion, and physical capabilities.

What is your purpose? How will you give to others? How will you grow? What tools were you given to accomplish this purpose? How will you use those tools? How will you change yourself and the world? Why are you here?

Growth is simple. First, what is your goal? Second, what will you do today to get you closer to that goal?

Growth comes from a small effort exerted over a long period of time. You don’t have to crush yourself. You only have to stretch yourself. Do one extra push-up, one extra minute learning, one extra encouragement for a friend.

Growth is hard because it requires consistency; only a daily effort will produce results. There are 288 five-minute windows of time in a day. Let’s pick a time and get started on the path of growth.