I stumbled across this book when I was totally exhausted and completely stressed out. I was trying to balance too many plates at once and I felt I was becoming disillusioned with teaching… “What?” I hear you say? “But you love teaching, you have taught all your adult life!.
When the student is ready the teacher will appear – Zen proverb
I was so, so tired, even too tired to read, this book, Necessary Endings by Henry Cloud, appeared in Amazon suggestions and I downloaded the audio version. I had to listen to it many, many times to piece it all together as I kept falling asleep, as I was so stressed I kept waking in the middle of the night, still hearing the narrator’s voice in my ears…
After several more stressful and long days and sleepiness nights… it dawned on me! Necessary Endings! I needed to stop everything I was doing and clear up unfinished business and sort my life out from the ground up. I needed this dose of reality to see that I needed to cut out the deadwood in order for new shoots to grow.
Cloud states “Successful leaders ALL have one thing in common: They get in touch with reality. If you comb the leadership literature, one theme runs throughout everyone’s descriptions of the best leaders. The great ones have either a natural ability, or an acquired one, to ‘confront the brutal facts… especially when it comes to seeing a necessary ending.” He also likes Jack Welch’s view that a leader must discern whether a business or a division needs to be fixed, closed or sold.
It slowly but surely dawned on me. I must close my business Bourne Learning, clear out the deadwood and deal with the unfinished business in my life. To the horror of my accountant I gave instructions to her to close the business down. I informed my customers and team members and took the website down.
Pruning: Growth Depends on Getting Rid of the Unwanted or Superfluous (Chapter 2) –
Next I made arrangements for my company car to be returned at a specific date, this meant I had to go through every room, outhouse, loft, cupboard, anywhere I had unwanted STUFF. It got bagged up and I took it to the charity shop or to the recycling centre. I also read Mario Kondo’s book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying: A simple, effective way to banish clutter forever, which I will be giving my review for at a later time.
Cloud also states “All of your precious resources–time, energy, talent, passion, money–should only go to the buds of your life or your business that are the best, are fixable and are indispensable.” Now I was making spaces in my home and in my head, I began to sleep, really sleep well, the kind that you wake up feeling refreshed and rested, so well I went back to the B-Alert system in the “Power of Focus” book by Jack Canfield that I did a review which you can read here.
To sum it all up —Dave Ramsey, New York Times bestselling author of The Total Money Makeover states “If you’re hesitant to pull the trigger when things obviously aren’t working out, Henry Cloud’s Necessary Endings may be the most important book you read all year.” I could not agree more, this book has to be the best book I have read in a long time, my new business would have not started if I did not take time out for Necessary Endings, and I doubt if I would have found the passion back for teaching and find fire in my belly again.
What about you? Is it time to prune your life? Need to find that extra zing in your step? Do you want to wake up feeling rested and full of life? You won’t go far wrong by taking time to read this book – too tired to read it? Get the audio version.