Samurai leadership

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The Last Samurai is a 2003 American film where Tom Cruise portrays a Captain of a U.S. Army cavalry regiment. He comes into contact with samurai warriors in 19th century Japan. He eventually befriends the leader and earns the respect of the samurai. As he learns the art of wielding a sword, he takes the counsel of a young samurai. He tells Cruise he has “too many minds.” If he wants to learn to use the sword, he has to be of “one mind.” In other words, focus on the task at hand. Not bad leadership advice.

A major issue that plagues leaders is having “too many minds.” A lack of focus will make you ineffective as a leader. Related to this is an observation: “Sometimes a lack of focus is easy to see, even for you. Other times it is hidden where it slowly eats away at your outcome.  What do you do?  Focus on one thing at a time, and stop worrying about other things. I know, “easier said than done.” Dave Ramsey, the founder of Ramsey Solutions, often says that financial freedom requires “Gazelle Intensity.” A gazelle in the wild will scan the countryside looking for danger, and then with great speed, they can move to a place of safety. You too can learn to focus intensely on one thing at a time. You’ll be glad you did.

Proverbs 4:25-27  Let your eyes look straight ahead; fix your gaze directly before you. Give careful thought to the paths for your feet and be steadfast in all your ways.

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