365 Days of Living the Dale Carnegie Principles
Day 5. March 30, 2011
I can’t decide which Carnegie story to share today so I’m sharing two today. To the two people that read my blog (ha) feel free to let me know which you like best.
I have suggested an idea on at least 3 different occasions to “Carlos”. Each and every time the idea was shot down. I understand Carlos’s hesitation to adopt my idea so I don’t really argue the point. Well today Carlos came to me with a brilliant idea he was so excited to share.
You know where I’m going with this story.
Carlos shared his idea—which of course was my idea. I can probably reference the exact days I suggested the idea. I listened to Carlos telling me his brilliant idea and kept repeating in my head… “Dale Carnegie. Dale Carnegie.” I took a deep breath. I struggled internally because I thought Carlos was proving yet again that he’s nuts. I sat there struggling and then thought… who cares whose idea it is… all I know is that the idea is a good one and I finally get approval to carry it out. I smiled and told Carlos it’s a great idea.
The principle I used is from Dale Carnegie’s book, How to Win Friends and Influence People:
Principle 16. Let the other person feel that the idea is his or hers.
When you let the other person feel the idea is his or hers—both of you can focus your energy toward following through on the idea. Progress is made.
I had a photoshoot today that I was not especially enthused about. I had a horrible time trying to prepare the studio. The fabric I was using as a prop was wrinkled and all my efforts to iron and steam the wrinkles out failed. I set the shot up—took a dozen photos. Didn’t really like any of them. I was completely frustrated that I had to do this task. In my mind this task really wasn’t my responsibility… etc, etc. The day just seemed to drag on forever. I was concluding it was a crummy day.
Before leaving I reviewed my to-do list and noticed I didn’t finish an article I had written. I needed some photos to really make the article come alive. I started gathering props and samples. I went into the studio, removed the previous items I had photographed about two hours earlier. I left the wrinkled fabric in place—mainly because I liked the color and didn’t want to try ironing other fabric.
Well, after an hour and a half into this second photoshoot of the day, I had to pull myself away from my work. I was completely engulfed in the work—I was not merely photographing pins, needles and flower samples—no—no—I was creating art. I was immersed in my work—changing angles and lighting as I photographed. I probably could have stayed well into the night photographing pins, needles and flowers.
As I drove home trying to think of what Carnegie principles I exercised today I realized I was my own case study—my own lab rat. The first photoshoot was miserable—because I didn’t approach it with enthusiasm. The second photoshoot was creative, fun and a success (even with the same wrinkled fabric) because I approached it with giddy enthusiasm. My perspective of the task I had to do changed. It was the same work– just a different outlook.
The principle I used in this example is from Dale Carnegie’s How to Stop Worrying and Start Living.
Put enthusiasm into your work.
When you put enthusiasm in your work the output is better quality because you put your heart into it. You might even find that the work doesn’t feel like labor at all. And let’s be clear– it doesn’t matter what type of work– doing the dishes, mopping the floor, performing brain surgery– if you approach it with enthusiasm you are guaranteed to feel more productive and fulfilled.
So, to the couple of people that read my blog… which story do you like best?