Today is the Tomorrow You Had Been Putting Things Off For, Yesterday!

“Concentrate all your thoughts upon the work at hand. The sun’s rays do not burn until brought to a focus.” –Alexander Graham Bell

I SEE SOME VERY IMPORTANT points highlighted in this quote, namely

  1. Concentration

  2. Thoughts

  3. Process of Completing a Given Task

  4. Present Rather than the Past or the Future

  5. Immense Power of the Sun and its Limited Capacity in a Given Situation

  6. Focus

  7. End Result

Those unaware of the immensely valuable contributions of Alexander Graham Bell to modern living, please STOP reading any further. All others may make an effort to unearth the deep-rooted message from the inventor of the microphone and the eventual “electrical speech machine,” the name he gave to his invention of the telephone.

‘Power of Concentration’ is one of the basic building blocks that teachers help implant into every child at the earliest possible stage. Their continued attention, combined with tender guidance, helps us remove distractions from our minds and generate positive thoughts. The little assignments at the elementary level made us all proud upon completion, no matter how mundane they might seem today.

This personality trait, supported by our power of concentration, helps us gather the strength for concerted efforts in whatever we want to accomplish. It gives us an undying sense of determination. Once we have it all worked out, putting things off for tomorrow finds no place in our vocabulary. We understand and appreciate the necessity of fulfilling our obligations in a well-orchestrated manner.

The stories we heard from our parents and grandparents, the lullabies and all the jokes we enjoyed since early childhood helped us create a foundation on which to build our growth into adulthood. We watched our elders work hard to earn sustenance for the family. As our baby steps transformed into youthful identity, we started to think of what we would like to become.

Let us now try to recollect if we ever tried putting things off for tomorrow in those early days. Other than a few exceptions, I do not remember doing that. The only possible exception might have been the daily homework. At times, we found our assignments to be so overwhelming we could not dare touch them without seeking support from other classmates who completed them. No doubt, our thoughts were at work to help extricate us from the burden of consequences.

Do you remember the joy of completing all given assignments and standing in front of the class with a huge smile on your face? I do! Completion of a given task gives us an incomparable pleasure especially when we do it within prescribed time limit.

Hint: Never put off until tomorrow what you can do today!

We can also effectively relate to the advice that we have all received through our life, at one time or another, to live in the present rather than the past or the future. It is this advice that teaches us to keep our feet firmly on the ground. Abiding by this principle only goes to help us take consolidated steps where no issue goes unattended to hound us after, in a million different ways.

Steps 5 and 6 above warn us against imaginative power of our assumed success, which is more of a transitory nature than permanent. The analogy of sun’s rays and their failure to ignite without absolute focus is a mute testament to the unexpectedly tough situations where we sometimes find ourselves. It is only when we delve deeper into the problem and focus on the contributory factors that we are able to come up with plausible solutions. Solution appears when we put our knowledge and experiences together.

Step 7 brings us to a happy-ending with the possibility of achieving the desired result.

The wisdom of management studies conducted over more than a century, the treatises carefully written by experts, ‘gurus’ and researchers alike can all be summed up in this one immensely valuable quote from an individual who left us to fend for ourselves almost a hundred years ago.

We need not ruin our perfect present by gloating over the past or worrying about the future.

Because Today is the Tomorrow, We had been talking about Yesterday!

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