by Lyndia Grant
Special to the NNPA from the New York Amsterdam News
Les Brown, author and internationally-known motivational speaker, contends there are 9 principles that he defines as necessary for true greatness, Principle No. 5 – Building and maintaining relationships are critical to social development, both in the family and the community. An alliance of two or more minds working together in perfect harmony for the attainment of a common objective is significant. Success doesn’t come about without the cooperation of others.
Psalm 133:1 says it this way “Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brothers to dwell together in unity!”
Sometimes we see a task before us and it appears overwhelming, and without seeking others who can help us make our vision a reality, we quit.
Ants are the ultimate metaphor for the working class. Ants are necessary for life! They take care of business!
They pull other insects 10 times its size, and won’t give up, finally finding a way. Once it discovers a winning strategy it’s all over! Like the ant, you can achieve much more than you ever expected if you keep trying.
Nothing could grow in the soil without the constant action of billions of ants; farmer’s fields would lie barren – nothing could be produced – yet thanks to these seemingly insignificant creatures that are mostly invisible as they work their magic, we replenish our food supplies.
Another metaphor to help us understand the importance of maintaining relationships and how critical it is to our social development is a lesson from geese. It’s teamwork at its best. It demonstrates how working together in harmony can have a profound and powerful effect on any endeavor. When we use these principles in our relationships with others, it will help us grow when we continually nurture and encourage it.
The point of the metaphor is this: as each goose flaps its wings, it creates uplift for the birds that follow. By flying in a ‘V’ formation the whole flock adds 71 percent extra to the flying range. This is the main point of the lesson from geese; it’s about the importance of achieving goals.
This lesson also reminds us that the goal is more important than any one individual; it’s the effort of the team that causes each goose to save 71 percent of their energy by flying in the V formation. When we have a sense of community and focus, we create trust and can help each other to achieve our goals.
When a goose falls out of formation it suddenly feels the drag and resistance of flying alone, so it quickly falls back in formation to lighten its flying load.
If we had as much sense as geese we would stay in formation with those headed where we want to go, and would be willing to accept their help and help others along the way.
When a goose tires of flying up front it drops back into formation and another goose flies to the point position; yet we want to stay out front forever as if that’s the only position for us.
We should respect and protect each other’s unique set of skills, capabilities, talents and resources.
When a goose gets sick, two geese drop out of formation and follow it down to the ground to help and protect it. If we did the same, we would stand by one another in difficult times, as well as when we’re strong and doing well.
Geese flying in formation ‘honk’ to encourage those up front to keep up their speed; do we encourage others? Every goal that I’ve been privileged to achieve, came as a result of trusting in the Lord, and working in harmony with others! Think about it, and make that change!
Lyndia Grant is a radio talk show host on 1340, WYCB AM, Fridays at 6 p.m. Visit her website at www.lyndiagrant.com, call her at 202-518-3192; or email firstname.lastname@example.org.