Lessons, Lessons, Everywhere

It’s amazing how many lessons we can find within our environment if we just pause, observe, and think about the many obvious things we usually take for granted.

The Wizard of Oz, based on the best-selling book by L. Frank Baum, was first released in 1939.

  • It is often ranked among the top ten best movies of all-time.
  • It is believed by many to be the most-watched film in history.
  • Hundreds of millions have seen this movie over the past 70 years.

Of those millions who saw this classic, many would say it was simply an entertaining family movie. Many others would share what they thought was a powerful moral embedded within the storyline. In fact, based on one’s personal philosophy, there were supposedly several morals identified in this time-honored plot.

  • Some agree with the folk rock band AMERICA who, in 1974, sang: “Oz never did give nothing to the Tin Man that he didn’t, didn’t already have!” They were, of course, referring to the potential within every individual whether we realize we have it or not.
  • Many related this fable to another classic, Acres of Diamonds, when they heard Dorothy say: “The next time I go looking for my heart’s desire, I won’t look any further than my own backyard. If it’s not there, then I never really lost it to begin with.”
  • Still others truly believed it to be a classic parable on the silver crusade.
  • Others felt it contained an obvious message of populism and national reform.

Although it’s quite obvious that people’s opinions were based much on their personal beliefs and values, one must admit that it’s to discover a “moral to the story” in most everything we see. As proven by The Wizard of Oz, the vehicle containing the moral can be quite simplistic.

For instance, think about the things we can learn from a simple jigsaw puzzle.

  1. The creator of the puzzle gave you the picture as a guidebook.
  2. Be sure to look at the big picture. Getting hung up on the little pieces only leads to frustration.
  3. Establish the border first. Boundaries give a sense of security and order.
  4. Don’t force a fit. If something is meant to be, it will come together naturally.
  5. When one spot stops working, move to another. But be sure to come back later.
  6. Don’t be afraid to try different combinations. Some matches are surprising.
  7. When things aren’t going so well, take a break. Everything will look different when you return.
  8. Perseverance pays off. Every important puzzle went together bit by bit, piece by piece.
  9. Variety is the spice of life. It’s the different colors and patterns that make the puzzle interesting.
  10. Working together with friends and family makes any task fun.
  11. Take time often to celebrate your successes (even little ones).
  12. Anything worth doing takes time and effort. A great puzzle can’t be rushed.

Do yourself a favor and start seeking the many lessons provided for us in the course of your typical daily routine. Many of our greatest discoveries were made in the simplest of circumstances. Seek, discover, develop, share.

About Harry K. Jones

Harry K. Jones is a motivational speaker and consultant for AchieveMax®, Inc., a company of professional speakers who provide custom-designed seminars, keynote presentations, and consulting services. Harry's top requested topics include change management, customer service, creativity, employee retention, goal setting, leadership, stress management, teamwork, and time management. For more information on Harry's presentations, please call 800-886-2629 or fill out our contact form.

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