Sow? What the heck does that mean? The definition of sow means to scatter seed over (land, earth, etc.) for the purpose of growth. The Roman philosopher, politician, lawyer, orator, and political theorist, Marcus T. Cicero, said, “As you have sown so shall you reap.” And in the New Testament we find, “…whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” (Galatians 6:7) This phrase has been used to describe good farming practices, but also your own personal productivity. Probably a more modern version of this saying is “what goes around comes around.” It all means the same thing. What get out what you put in.

Often, the marking of a new year brings hopes for realization of dreams and achievement of goals. But so often, those dreams and goals are not realized. Year after year, the top unrealized goals seem to remain unchanged.

• Lose Weight and Get Fit
• Quit Smoking
• Learn Something New
• Eat Healthier and Diet
• Get Out of Debt and Save Money
• Spend More Time with Family
• Travel to New Places
• Be Less Stressed
• Volunteer
• Drink Less

These are great goals. Do any of them look familiar? Are there others that you wish to achieve this year? Did you achieve everything last year that you wanted to? If not, what will you do differently to make sure this year brings you the things you want in life?

If you didn’t achieve everything you wanted to last year you really need to inspect what you expect in life. Are your expectations for these things to happen realistic? Sure you might want them...but what are you really doing to get them?

The idea of reaping and sowing is not just a cute saying. It is a natural law that has proved out over the millennia. It’s akin to the law of action and interaction and the law of cause and effect. You can’t get something you want unless you take “proper” actions that will lead to the desired result.

You can use the idea of reaping and sowing to achieve you dreams and desires. But, first you must fully understand how it works. There are five ways that reaping and sowing work. You have to understand all of them in order to use it effectively.

1) You will reap what you sow. If you are a rancher and you raise cattle, you will reap cattle. If you are a farmer and you raise corn, you will reap corn. If you have a slovenly diet, you will reap an unhealthy and overweight body. If you exercise regularly you will reap a metabolism that is likely to burn more fat.

2) What you sow today, you may not reap tomorrow. For example, the farmer who plants seeds cannot expect to harvest his crop tomorrow. Time must elapse and during that time the farmer must do all sorts of things to help his crops grow (water, weed, fertilize). It can take days and it can take months for his crop to become harvestable. In the same way, if you are overweight, you can’t expect that one day of eating right will give you the body you want. A commonly used estimate is that one pound of fat is equal to 3,500 calories. Using that guideline, in order to lose weight, you’d have to have your caloric consumption operate at a daily deficit. That could happen via diet, exercise, or a combination of the two. If you plan to “safely” lose 2 pounds a week and you were 25 pounds overweight, it would take about 3 months to lose that weight. It doesn't happen overnight!

3) What you sow or what you put out will be returned to you exponentially. The farmer knows that planting thousands of seeds will provide the ability to have tens of thousands of seeds available from his crop. Another example of this is generosity. Your willingness to help others always, yes always, comes back to you in some form of reward. Often, you’ll find that others will be there to help you in your time of need. Other examples deal with your personality. A friendly person tends to have lots of friends. Conversely, a person with a dour personality tends not to have a lot of friends.

4) The ability to reap effectively depends on the environment that you are sowing in. For example, if the farmer’s soil doesn't have the right pH for the crop he is planting, he will probably not have a very robust harvest. One of the most well-known stories about reaping and sowing and the environment comes from Mathew 13:3-13-8.
In the same way that the environment (condition of the soil) needs to be optimal for the farmer, the same goes for you. For example, if you if are trying to lose weight, you are more likely to be successful by associating with others who have the same goal. This is one of the benefits of belonging to a health club. You are around others who can support and encourage you. Conversely, if you associate with people that have a negative attitude, are cynical, or sarcastic, you are generally more likely not to have a positive attitude and be more like them. The environment that you are in will have an effect on your ability to thrive.

5) The key to bountiful reaping is consistency and patience. This really goes to points 1 and 2. In point 1, (“you will reap what you sow”) you must be consistent in taking the actions that will help you get your desired results. This means that you need to be disciplined and not look for the quick fix or easy way out. In point #2, you may not be able to reap right away. Keep patient and remain consistent. The crop or the desired outcome will happen!

Why not start out your new year by using the reaping and sowing tool to achieve your goals? If you understand and utilize the five points above, you are more likely to get a lot more of what you want out of life.

Focus For Success!

Richard B. Greene

Author's Bio: 

Richard B. Greene is business visionary, writer, and entrepreneur with more than 25+ years of experience driving double-digit revenue growth for start-up, turnaround, and high growth organizations. As a sales executive and trainer, he has mentored thousands of individuals in methods for the attainment of personal Peak Performance.

Rich is also a Ironman triathlete and avid ultra-marathon swimmer. He believes that athletic competition promotes discipline, dedication, focus, planning, the importance of hard work, humility, and the necessary elements for long term success. He combines the elements used by successful athletes with a focused approach to learning and change management that teaches business executives, professionals, and entrepreneurs how to tap into the power of their internal resources to achieve the greatest returns with the least amount of effort. His unique approach to development allows for exponentially greater success rates for learning than many traditional programs allowing rapid return on investment for both the company and the individual.

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