Sharpening the Saw

Some good advice at Remember To Rest.

It is vital for you to step back regularly; to look at your work, to evaluate it, to strategise and only then, to continue with it. All great artists step back from their work, look at it, sum it up and only then do they continue with their artwork.

Stephen Covey has a chapter on Sharpening the Saw in Seven Habits of Highly Effective People.

The seventh habit that makes all the other six last is Sharpening the Saw. This powerful idea can really only be described by Covey’s word-picture:

Suppose you were to come upon someone in the woods working feverishly to saw down a tree.

“What are you doing?” you ask.

“Can’t you see?” comes the impatient reply. “I’m sawing down this tree.”

“You look exhausted!” you exclaim. “How long have you been at it?”

“Well why don’t you take a break for a few minutes and sharpen that saw?” you inquire. “I’m sure it would go a lot faster.”

“I don’t have time to sharpen the saw,” the man says emphatically. “I’m too busy sawing!”

Sharpening the saw is about renewing yourself – physically, mentally, spiritually and emotionally.

I am yet to learn to do this well.