I know you will enjoy this guest post by Tuck Mantooth. Tuck writes tales about his childhood memories of Southeast Texas. Be sure to leave a comment to encourage Tuck. He’s kinda shy about telling his tales!
Granny Hardin cooked the very best apple pie in the county. Every year, she won first prize in the county fair, and she had become widely known as the best apple pie cook in the area.
Bump in the road to success. Then one year Granny’s gas oven broke, and a Sear’s salesman sold her an electric range. When she saw all the new technology and baking cycles, she was thrilled.
However when she cooked her annual apple pie that year, she came in tenth place.
Then, she questioned herself, “Why didn’t I win this year?”
She examined her apples, and they were top grade.
She double checked her recipes and ingredients, and she found nothing wrong there.
She finally concluded that the only thing that had changed was the oven.
New strategies. So, Granny rushed back to Sears, bought a new gas-powered oven, and returned to what had worked for her all along.
The next year, she entered the pie-cooking contest, the jam-making contest, and the chili cookoff. Strangely, she came dead last again with her apple pie entry. But she won with her strawberry jam and her own secret chili recipe.
To prove a point, next year she vowed to change. Granny abandoned everything she had done differently, and she focused only on her apple pie again. No jam–no chili–nothing else mattered.
Success. Finally, success came. Granny won second place with her apple pie that year.
During the baking and cooking process, she had discovered the tastes of her judges. So, she focused totally on what they liked about apple pies. Instead of sticking with what met with the judges’ approval for blue ribbons in several contests, she chose to continue to try to win in the one arena, where her best work was obvious to everyone else.
She traded two first places for a second. And she was happy with the results.
Moral of the story. Focus on your best work.
And don’t expect very good parables from someone who loves apple pies.
© 2009 Tuck Mantooth All Rights Reserved
Image courtesy of KEKO64/FreeDigitalPhotos.net
I think Tuck has been reading my mail about the need to focus.
Do you have trouble setting priorities and focusing on your your best work?