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5 simple ways to maintain your cutting edge

5 simple ways to maintain your cutting edge

It takes much more effort to cut when your ax is dull.

If you stop often to restore your edge, you can fly through your work effortlessly!

How can you maintain your cutting edge day in and day out?

A story was told of two guys in a wood chopping competition.  One never stopped.  The second stopped every few minutes and sat under a shade tree.

When the competition ended, the second man actually had more wood cut.  He confessed his secret:  “When I stopped, I was sharpening my ax.

Here are my 5 secrets to maintain a “cutting edge”:

1. Consistent devotional life

  • It’s easy to be hit or miss with your time spent with heaven.  Your “important” work here on earth postpones your meetings with God.  Sounds ridiculous, right?
     
  • Life can always throw you a curve, but I try to spend time every day in contact with heaven.  For more difficult, delicate situations, I pray more and add fasting.  I often fast all day until a crucial conversation or decision has been made in a critical problem.  I have my “cutting edge” when I need it.

2. Consistent personal growth

  • If you stop reading, listening, and learning, your edge is blunting.  There is an online world of development at your fingertips.  It is filled with people who have already fought your battles.
     
  • Don’t let a day go by without a new idea, concept, or inspiration coming into your mind and heart.  Like treasure in a vault, those ideas will spring back into your mind at the critical moment you need them to resolve an otherwise impossible dilemma.

3. Consistent physical activity

  • I was recently at a conference with a young leader who pastors a huge church and is a national senator in his nation.  I noticed that he was there at 5:30 each morning in the gym working, sweating, pushing his heart and body.  I immediately understood why he has such passion, focus, and influence.
     
  • Physical activity, diet, and sleep maintain your cutting edge.  If you go through “highs and lows” all day by high sugar, high fat and high caffeine you will constantly need naps and “breaks.”  Get in shape, eat healthy and sleep 8 hours to literally ATTACK every day.

4. Consistent positive attitude

  • I was recently at the largest church in the world.  The leader gave his secret of consistent growth:  “positive thoughts, positive words, positive actions.
     
  • Negative thoughts, words, and actions sap your energy.  Don’t surround yourself with people who are low energy, negative, and pessimistic. Great leaders saturate their thoughts in God’s power, God’s Word, and God’s direction for their lives.
Great leaders saturate their thoughts in God’s power, God’s Word, and God’s direction for their lives.
— Larry Stockstill

5. Consistent partnerships

  • Iron sharpens iron and one man sharpens another.” (Prov. 27:17).  Relationships and partnerships are one of the greatest ways to maintain your cutting edge.
     
  • A true friend will “sharpen you.”  They confront weaknesses and encourage you in storms.  Surround yourself with committed, consistent partners.

These 5 things keep the “chips flying” when you are chopping through the forest of your challenges!

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