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What is true diligence? A review by Steve Scott "Lessons from the richest man who ever lived"

Have you stopped to consider whether you are truly being diligent? Chances are your first response is to say, “Well, of course I’m diligent. I get my work done on time. I never miss a deadline. My boss is perfectly satisfied with my performance. So if that’s not being diligent, I do not know what it is”. Buckle up your saddle, because I’m about to take you for a ride!

No, being diligent is NOT meeting deadlines and completing tasks assigned to you. Being diligent is not about doing what you are supposed to do or what you are expected to do. Being diligent isn’t even about working hard! It turns out that our traditional definitions of the term “diligence” fail to convey the true meaning of the word.

Steve Scott presents in his audio series “Lessons from the Richest Man Who Ever Lived” a definition of diligence and other qualities necessary to achieve wealth and prosperity, from the perspective of Solomon’s Proverbs. King Solomon is generally considered, and historically accepted, to be the richest man to ever walk the earth. Not only was he rich in material possessions, but Solomon’s wisdom is legendary and has reached epic proportions. It is from Solomon’s most famous writings that Steve Scott draws the lessons he imparts as part of the aforementioned audio series.

So what is diligence? Imagine the following scenario. A couple of trees need to be felled. Two men approach work. The first arrives with a hammer in his hand. With all his determination and strength, he beats the tree for hours and hours and hours. Finally, when his strength is about to give way, he watches with satisfaction as the tree falls to the ground. The other man, however, brings a very sharp axe. In a matter of minutes he manages to have the tree so firm that a simple push would finish the job. He hits the tree one more time and falls. Which of the two men was diligent? They both completed the job. One of them worked very hard, while the other worked very smart! So which one was diligent?

I’m not sure yet? Think about this set of circumstances. Two sports teams prepare for the regional championship. They must compete with each other. Favorites work and practice, putting all their energy and effort into their one hour practice in the morning and another two hours in the afternoon. When game day comes around, people watch in amazement as the underdog easily and handily wins the game. It turns out that while the first team was sure they were being diligent, the members of the second team would go to practice an hour earlier in the morning and stay an hour later at night than the other team. So which team was diligent?

While most of us equate diligence with completing assigned tasks and doing what is expected of us, Steve Scott, through Solomonic wisdom, points out that simply doing what is expected is NOT being diligent. Being diligent is going further. It is doing WHATEVER IT TAKES to achieve the GOALS you have set for yourself. It’s knowing what’s expected, what others are doing, and where the rest of the world stops, and then going one step further, if nothing else!

In his “Lessons from the Richest Man Who Ever Lived,” Steve Scott does a great job of challenging our preconceived notions of diligence. Following Solomon’s teachings, Scott urges the listener to work smarter rather than try harder, to be aware that activity does not necessarily equate to achievement, and that in order to achieve the level of prosperity of which we are truly capable, we MUST go beyond what is expected and do. What is necessary.

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