Sharpening the Physical Saw

February 26, 2008

I have been reading Stephen Covey recently. He says that we need to “sharpen the saw” in four dimensions:

  • Physical
  • Social/Emotional
  • Mental
  • Spiritual

According to Covey, there are 3 key areas for sharpening the physical dimension:

  • Nutrition
  • Rest and Relaxation
  • Exercise

However, there appear to be other areas that we should attend to:

  • Hygiene, cleanliness and grooming
  • Clothing
  • Household maintenance
  • Tools and equipment
  • Finances



Reflective Teaching Plans

February 7, 2008

When I trained to be a teacher, we learned techniques for developing our own skills as teachers, ie. “reflective teaching”. One of the focus areas for this was the development of quality lesson plans and evaluations.

Perhaps a similar system could be used in other areas of my life?

Lesson Plans


When and where?


The aspet of the lession that will be given special attention.


  • Classroom management.
  • Encouraging the quiet ones.
  • Enjoyment.
  • Persentation

Learning Intentions

What I want the children to learn? How doesit link to the curriculum?

Activity Outline

What can I do to achieve that?

How will I differentiate?

Strategies and Management

How will I do it? How will I manage the activity? What questions will I ask?

eg. Clear policy on who speaks and when.


What will I need?


How will I assess?

Who listened? Contributed? Asked questions?

Outcomes and Evaluation


What did I do well?

Areas for improvement

What could I do better?

Qualities of learning and evidence

Did the class learn? How do I know?

Quality of activity in relation to learning intentions

Did the session meet its objectives?

Future action

What would I do differently next time?

Focus, Influence and Change

January 28, 2008

We all want to change the world, but where to start?

By targetting the areas of life where I have most influence, I will be able to have greatest effect. So, it makes sense to focus on changing the things where I have most influence. 

I have more control over myself than over others; so my ability to influence my world begins within me and works outwards. I start with my inner world, and work outwards.

At home, for example:

  • My inner world (motivation, ideas, emotions)
  • My outer world (my appearence, my stuff)
  • My family
  • My close friends
  • My other friends
  • The groups that I belong to
  • People I do business with
  • Strangers
  • etc.

Or at work:

  • My inner world (my motivation, my ideas, my emotions)
  • My outer world (my appearence, my workspace, my work)
  • My team (through building relationships, offering support, making suggestions)
  • My department
  • My organisation
  • My city
  • My country
  • The world

So, mastery of the inner world should be a significant aspect of my life’s work. How, for example, can I expect spread peace between others if I am not at peace within myself?

Unfortunately, self-mastery is not easily achieved. Nevertheless, it is a worthy aspiration, and should form the heart of my strategy for brining about change in any other aspect of life.