Look To The Past To Improve The Present And Future

My younger brother, Chris Morris, is an insanely talented musician/singer/songwriter. (Sure, I might be a tad biased but if you don’t believe me just see for yourself). This week Chris released a new music video for a song called, “Why Don’t You Come Home?” The song is a resurrection and recreation of an incredibly rare and unreleased Stevie Wonder song from the 1960’s that inexplicably never made it on to any of Stevie’s albums. (Listen to Stevie’s original version here). When Chris stumbled across it he “decided to get in the studio and pay tribute to this unknown masterpiece.”
What amazed me is that more than 40 years after the song was originally written and recorded, it still sounds current and relevant. It wouldn’t be a stretch to say the song was ‘ahead of its time.’ And now, decades later, it has been given new life.
In thinking about Chris’ process, I’m reminded that often the best ideas, practices, methods, systems, and behaviors, are those that have been there all along, sitting around collecting dust. So why not look for new growth and development opportunities by reflecting on old ones that either used to work or were never put into practice in the first place?
Considering the following questions:

  • What worked well for you in the past that you’ve gotten away from? Did you have a system or process that worked well for an old task or job that could be applied to your current job or a current task? Do you no longer flex your leadership style as well as you used to?
  • What have you learned in the past that you never put into practice? Have you ever read a book or article and thought, “I need to do that,” but never did? Have you ever taken a class, loved the subject, but forgot about it the minute you put the textbook up on the shelf?
  • What were you once very passionate about that you’ve since abandoned? What activities or hobbies significantly contributed to your overall happiness and well-being that you no longer participate in?

I challenge you to sit down and do some brainstorming around this subject. What ideas, practices, methods, systems, and behaviors from the past can you breathe new life into? Once you’ve identified them, bring them home where they belong.

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