Building Tomorrow Doesn’t Work

This morning my tea leaves spoke to me. Well, the leaves didn’t actually speak. It was more like the words on the tea bag tag jumped out at me as I sat at my desk sipping my sweet and spicy herbal blend and wondering how I’m ever going to make it through the list of things I want to accomplish this week. Here’s what they said:

“You can’t build a reputation on what you’re going to do.” – Henry Ford

I thought about that a minute as my tea steamed and I stared at the piles of papers on my desk waiting to be attacked today. And then I thought about Henry Ford.

Henry built his reputation on two great things he gave to the modern world: the Model T and the assembly line. But what about the things Henry didn’t get around to doing? Most inventors and entrepreneurs have about a million ideas a day. I’m positive Henry had more than just two. It left me wondering what else the world would have right now if Henry would’ve had more time to get things done.

There are always two camps on my to do list: the list of things that I have to do so I can pay my bills, and the list of ideas I want to create that will make the world more remarkable. You can guess which list is more interesting. And, sadly, you can probably guess which list doesn’t always see much action.

I tell myself, “That’s just the way it goes” or “If I had a just little more time in the day”. But truth be told, I’m just trying to make myself feel better because I also know this to be true:

You aren’t defined by your ideas, you’re defined by your actions. 

What you don’t build, or write, or start, or begin today isn’t going to build itself while you sleep and write emails.

You won’t build a blog if you’re never going to write. You can’t summit a mountain if you never start the journey. You’ll never see 100 countries if you don’t send in that passport application.

You and I have the exact same amount of time in our day as Henry Ford, and he managed to use it to invent a car. (And he didn’t even have Google)

Get up early and have a cup of tea. Choose now. Say yes to the right thing and get it done.

You’ll thank yourself. And someday the world will thank you too.