How to win friends and influence people – Summary – by Dale Carnegie

PART ONE: Fundamental Techniques in Handling People

1 – “IF YOU WANT TO GATHER HONEY, DON’T KICK OVER THE BEEHIVE”

Criticism is futile because it puts a person on the defensive and usually makes them strive to justify themselves. Criticism is dangerous, because it wounds a person’s precious pride, hurts their sense of importance, and arouses resentment.

There you are; human nature in action, wrongdoers, blaming everybody but
themselves. We are all like that.

“Don’t complain about the snow on your neighbor’s roof,” said Confucius, “when your own doorstep is unclean.”

Any fool can criticize, condemn and complain – and most fools do.
But it takes character and self-control to be understanding and forgiving.

Instead of condemning people, let’s try to understand them. Let’s try to figure out why they do what they do. That’s a lot more profitable and intriguing than criticism; and it breeds sympathy, tolerance and kindness. “To know all is to forgive all.”

“God Himself, sir, does not propose to judge man until the end of his days.” Why should you and I?

PRINCIPLE 1 – Don’t criticize, condemn or complain.

2 – THE BIG SECRET OF DEALING WITH PEOPLE

There is only one way under high heaven to get anybody to do anything. Did you ever stop to think of that? Yes, just one way. And that is by making the other person want to do it.

Some of the things most people want include:

  1. Health and the preservation of life.
  2. Food.
  3. Sleep.
  4. Money and the things money will buy.
  5. Life in the hereafter.
  6. Sexual gratification.
  7. The well-being of our children.
  8. A feeling of importance.

Almost all these wants are usually gratified—all except one. But there is one longing—almost as deep, almost as imperious, as the desire for food or sleep— which is seldom gratified. It is what Freud calls “the desire to be great.” It is what Dewey calls the “desire to be important.”

Everybody likes a compliment.

Abraham Lincoln

The deepest principle in human nature is the craving to be appreciated.

William James

The desire for a feeling of importance is one of the chief distinguishing differences between mankind and the animals.

If some people are so hungry for a feeling of importance that they actually go insane to get it, imagine what miracle you and I can achieve by giving people honest appreciation this side of insanity.

The difference between appreciation and flattery? That is simple. One is sincere and the other insincere. One comes from the heart out; the other from the teeth out. One is unselfish; the other selfish. One is universally admired; the other universally condemned.

“Every man I meet is my superior in some way, In that, I learn of him.”

Emerson

Give honest, sincere appreciation. Be “hearty in your approbation and lavish in your praise,” and people will cherish your words and treasure them and repeat them over a lifetime—repeat them years after you have forgotten them.

PRINCIPLE 2 – Give honest and sincere appreciation.

3 – “HE WHO CAN DO THIS HAS THE WHOLE WORLD WITH HIM. HE WHO CANNOT WALKS A LONELY WAY”

Here is one of the best bits of advice ever given about the fine art of human relationships. “If there is any one secret of success,” said Henry Ford, “it lies in the ability to get the other person’s point of view and see things from that person’s angle as well as from your own.”

If out of reading this book you get just one thing – an increased tendency to think always in terms of other people’s point of view, and see things from their angle – if you get that one thing out of this book, it may easily prove to be one of the building blocks of your career.

First, arouse in the other person an eager want. He who can do this has the whole world with him. He who cannot walks a lonely way.

William Winter once remarked that “self-expression is the dominant necessity of human nature.” Why can’t we adapt this same psychology to business dealings? When we have a brilliant idea, instead of making others think it is ours, why not let them cook and stir the idea themselves. They will then regard it as their own; they will like it and maybe eat a couple of helpings of it.

Remember: “First, arouse in the other person an eager want. He who can do this has the whole world with him. He who cannot walks a lonely way.”

PRINCIPLE 3 – Arouse in the other person an eager want.

FUNDAMENTAL TECHNIQUES IN HANDLING PEOPLE

PRINCIPLE 1 – Don’t criticize, condemn or complain.

PRINCIPLE 2 – Give honest and sincere appreciation.

PRINCIPLE 3 – Arouse in the other person an eager want.

PART TWO Ways to Make People Like You

1 – DO THIS AND YOU’LL BE WELCOME ANYWHERE

Did you ever stop to think that a dog is the only animal that doesn’t have to work for a living? A hen has to lay eggs, a cow has to give milk, and a canary has to sing. But a dog makes his living by giving you nothing but love.

People are not interested in you. They are not interested in me. They are interested in themselves – morning, noon and after dinner.

It is the individual who is not interested in his fellow men who has the greatest
difficulties in life and provides the greatest injury to others. It is from among such
individuals that all humun failures spring.

If you want others to like you, if you want to develop real friendships, if you want to help others at the same time as you help yourself, keep this principle in mind:

PRINCIPLE 1 – Become genuinely interested in other people.

2 – A SIMPLE WAY TO MAKE A GOOD FIRST IMPRESSION

Actions speak louder than words, and a smile says, “I like you, You make me happy. I am glad to see you.” That is why dogs make such a hit. They are so glad to see us that they almost jump out of their skins. So, naturally, we are glad to see them.

Action seems to follow feeling, but really action and feeling go together; and by regulating the action, which is under the more direct control of the will, we can indirectly regulate the feeling, which is not.

Every body in the world is seeking happiness – and there is one sure way to find it. That is by controlling your thoughts. Happiness doesn’t depend on outward conditions. It depends on inner conditions.

For nobody needs a smile so much as those who have none left to give!

PRINCIPLE 2 – Smile.

3 – IF YOU DON’T DO THIS, YOU ARE HEADED FOR TROUBLE

People are so proud of their names that they strive to perpetuate them at any cost.

PRINCIPLE 3 – Remember that a person’s name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language.

4 – AN EASY WAY TO BECOME A GOOD CONVERSATIONALIST

So if you aspire to be a good conversationalist, be an attentive listener. To be interesting, be interested. Ask questions that other persons will enjoy answering. Encourage them to talk about themselves and their accomplishments.

Remember that the people you are talking to are a hundred times more interested in themselves and their wants and problems than they are in you and your problems. A person’s toothache means more to that person than a famine in China which kills a million people. A boil on one’s neck interests one more than forty earthquakes in Africa. Think of that the next time you start a conversation.

PRINCIPLE 4 – Be a good listener. Encourage others to talk about themselves.

5 – HOW TO INTEREST PEOPLE

As all leaders know, that the royal road to a person’s heart is to talk about the things he or she treasures most.

Talking in terms of the other person’s interests pays off for both parties. Howard Z. Herzig, a leader in the field of employee communications, has always followed this principle. When asked what reward he got from it, Mr. Herzig responded that he not only received a different reward from each person but that in general the reward had been an enlargement of his life each time he spoke to someone.

PRINCIPLE 5 – Talk in terms of the other person’s interests.

6 – HOW TO MAKE PEOPLE LIKE YOU INSTANTLY

There is one all-important law of human conduct. If we obey that law, we shall almost never get into trouble. In fact, that law, if obeyed, will bring us countless friends and constant happiness. But the very instant we break the law, we shall get into endless trouble. The law is this: Always make the other person feel important.

Talk to people about themselves and they will listen for hours .

PRINCIPLE 6 – Make the other person feel important—and do it sincerely.

SIX WAYS TO MAKE PEOPLE LIKE YOU

PRINCIPLE 1 – Become genuinely interested in other people.

PRINCIPLE 2 – Smile.

PRINCIPLE 3 – Remember that a person’s name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language.P

PRINCIPLE 4 – Be a good listener. Encourage others to talk about themselves.

PRINCIPLE 5 – Talk in terms of the other person’s interests.

PRINCIPLE 6 – Make the other person feel important-and do it sincerely.

PART THREE: How to Win People to Your Way of Thinking

1 – YOU CAN’T WIN AN ARGUMENT

Avoid it as you would avoid rattlesnakes and earthquakes.

Nine times out of ten, an argument ends with each of the contestants more firmly convinced than ever that he is absolutely right.

You can’t win an argument. You can’t because if you lose it, you lose it; and if you win it, you lose it. Why? Well, suppose you triumph over the other man and shoot his argument full of holes and prove that he is non compos mentis. Then what? You will feel fine. But what about him? You have made him feel inferior. You have hurt his pride. He will resent your triumph. And –

A man convinced against his will Is of the same opinion still.

If you argue and rankle and contradict, you may achieve a victory sometimes; but it will be an empty victory because you will never get your opponent’s good will.

“Hatred is never ended by hatred but by love,”

Buddha

Welcome the disagreement. Remember the slogan, “When two partners always agree, one of them is not necessary.” If there is some point you haven’t thought about, be thankful if it is brought to your attention. Perhaps this disagreement is your opportunity to be corrected before you make a serious mistake.

Distrust your first instinctive impression. Our first natural reaction in a disagreeable situation is to be defensive. Be careful. Keep calm and watch out for your first reaction. It may be you at your worst, not your best.

Control your temper. Remember, you can measure the size of a person by what makes him or her angry. Listen first. Give your opponents a chance to talk. Let them finish. Do not resist, defend or debate. This only raises barriers. Try to build bridges of understanding. Don’t build higher barriers of misunderstanding.

Look for areas of agreement. When you have heard your opponents out, dwell first on the points and areas on which you agree.

Be honest, Look for areas where you can admit error and say so. Apologize for your mistakes. It will help disarm your opponents and reduce defensiveness.

PRINCIPLE 1 – The only way to get the best of an argument is to avoid it.

2 – A SURE WAY OF MAKING ENEMIES—AND HOW TO AVOID IT

You cannot teach a man anything; you can only help him to find it within himself.

One thing only I know, and that is that I know nothing.

Socrates

Be wiser than other people if you can; but do not tell them so.

Lord Chesterfield

Few people are logical. Most of us are prejudiced and biased. Most of us are blighted with preconceived notions, with jealousy, suspicion, fear, envy and pride. And most citizens don’t want to change their minds about their religion or their haircut or communism or their favorite movie star. So, if you are inclined to tell people they are wrong, please don’t.

In other words, don’t argue with your customer or your spouse or your adversary. Don’t tell them they are wrong, don’t get them stirred up. Use a little diplomacy.

PRINCIPLE 2 – Show respect for the other person’s opinions. Never say, “You’re wrong.”

3 – IF YOU’RE WRONG, ADMIT IT

Any fool can try to defend his or her mistakes – and most fools do – but it raises one above the herd and gives one a feeling of nobility and exultation to admit one’s mistakes.

When we are right, let’s try to win people gently and tactfully to our way of thinking, and when we are wrong—and that will be surprisingly often, if we are honest with ourselves—let’s admit our mistakes quickly and with enthusiasm. Not only will that technique produce astonishing results; but, believe it or not, it is a lot more fun, under the circumstances, than trying to defend oneself.

Remember the old proverb: “By fighting you never get enough, but by yielding you get more than you expected.”

PRINCIPLE 3 – If you are wrong, admit it quickly and emphatically.

4 – A DROP OF HONEY

It is an old and true maxim that “a drop of honey catches more flies than a gallon of gall.” So with men, if you would win a man to you cause, first convince him that you are his sincere friend. Therein is a drop of honey that catches his heart; which,say what you will, is the great high road to his reason.

A fable about the sun and the wind. They quarreled about which was the stronger, and the wind said, “I’ll prove I am. See the old man down there with a coat? I bet I can get his coat off him quicker than you can.”

So the sun went behind a cloud, and the wind blew until it was almost a tornado, but the harder it blew, the tighter the old man clutched his coat to him.

Finally, the wind calmed down and gave up, and then the sun came out from behind the clouds and smiled kindly on the old man. Presently, he mopped his brow and pulled off his coat. The sun then told the wind that gentleness and friendliness were always stronger than fury and force.

Remember what Lincoln said: “A drop of honey catches more flies than a gallon of gall.”

PRINCIPLE 4 – Begin in a friendly way.

5 – THE SECRET OF SOCRATES

In talking with people, don’t begin by discussing the things on which you differ. Begin by emphasizing—and keep on emphasizing—the things on which you agree. Keep emphasizing, if possible, that you are both striving for the same end and that your only difference is one of method and not of purpose.

PRINCIPLE 5 – Get the other person saying “yes, yes” immediately.

6 – THE SAFETY VALVE IN HANDLING COMPLAINTS

Must people trying to win others to their way of thinking do too much talking themselves. Let the other people talk themselves out. They know more about their business and problems than you do. So ask them questions. Let them tell you a few things.

If you disagree with them you may be tempted to interrupt. But don’t. It is dangerous. They won’t pay attention to you while they still have a lot of ideas of their own crying for expression. So listen patiently and with an open mind. Be sincere about it. Encourage them to express their ideas fully.

PRINCIPLE 6 – Let the other person do a great deal of the talking.

7 – HOW TO GET COOPERATION

” The reason why rivers and seas receive the homage of a hundred mountain streams is that they keep below them. Thus they are able to reign over all the mountain streams. So the sage, wishing to be above men, putteth himself below them; wishing to be before them, he putteth himself behind them. Thus, though his place be above men, they do not feel his weight; though his place be before them, they do not count it an injury.”

PRINCIPLE 7 – Let the other person feel that the idea is his or hers.

8 – A FORMULA THAT WILL WORK WONDERS FOR YOU

Remember that other people may be totally wrong. But they don’t think so. Don’t condemn them. Any fool can do that. Try to understand them. Only wise, tolerant, exceptional people even try to do that.

There is a reason why the other man thinks and acts as he does. Ferret out that reason – and you have the key to his actions, perhaps to his personality.

Try honestly to put yourself in his place.

If you say to yourself, “How would I feel, how would I react if I were in his shoes?” you will save yourself time and irritation, for “by becoming interested in the cause, we are less likely to dislike the effect.” And, in addition, you will sharply increase your skill in human relationships.

PRINCIPLE 8 – Try honestly to see things from the other person’s point of view.

9 – WHAT EVERYBODY WANTS

Wouldn’t you like to have a magic phrase that would stop arguments, eliminate ill feeling, create good will, and make the other person listen attentively?

Yes? All right. Here it is: “I don’t blame you one iota for feeling as you do. If I were you I would undoubtedly feel just as you do.”

An answer like that will soften the most cantankerous old cuss alive. And you can say that and be 100 percent sincere, because if you were the other person you, of course, would feel just as he does.

So, if you want to win people to your way of thinking, put in practice . . .

PRINCIPLE 9 – Be sympathetic with the other person’s ideas and desires.

10 – AN APPEAL THAT EVERYBODY LIKES

The person himself will think of the real reason. You don’t need to emphasize that. But all of us, being idealists at heart, like to think of motives that sound good. So, in order to change people, appeal to the nobler motives.

when no information can be secured about the customer, the only sound basis on which to proceed is to assume that he or she is sincere, honest, truthful and willing and anxious.

people are honest and want to discharge their obligations. The exceptions to that
rule are comparatively few, and I am convinced that the individuals who are
inclined to chisel will in most cases react favorably if you make them feel that you
consider them honest, upright and fair.

PRINCIPLE 10 – Appeal to the nobler motives.

11 – THE MOVIES DO IT. TV DOES IT….WHY DON’T YOU DO IT?

You can dramatize your ideas in business or in any other aspect of your life.

PRINCIPLE 11 – Dramatize your ideas.

12 – WHEN NOTHING ELSE WORKS, TRY THIS

“The way to get things done, is to stimulate competition. I do not mean in a sordid, money-getting way, but in the desire to excel.”

The desire to excel! The challenge! Throwing down the gauntlet! An infallible way of appealing to people of spirit.

All men have fears, but the brave put down their fears and go forward, sometimes to death, but always to victory.

That is what every successful person loves: the game. The chance for self- expression. The chance to prove his or her worth, to excel, to win. That is what makes foot-races and hog-calling and pie-eating contests. The desire to excel. The desire for a feeling of importance.

PRINCIPLE 12 – Throw down a challenge.

WIN PEOPLE TO YOUR WAY OF THINKING

PRINCIPLE 1 – The only way to get the best of an argument is to avoid it.

PRINCIPLE 2 – Show respect for the other person’s opinions. Never say, “You’re wrong.”

PRINCIPLE 3 – If you are wrong, admit it quickly and emphatically.

PRINCIPLE 4 – Begin in a friendly way.

PRINCIPLE 5 – Get the other person saying “yes, yes” immediately.

PRINCIPLE 6 – Let the other person do a great deal of the talking.

PRINCIPLE 7 – Let the other person feel that the idea is his or hers.

PRINCIPLE 8 – Try honestly to see things from the other person’s point of view.

PRINCIPLE 9 – Be sympathetic with the other person’s ideas and desires.

PRINCIPLE 10 – Appeal to the nobler motives.

PRINCIPLE 11 – Dramatize your ideas.

PRINCIPLE 12 – Throw down a challenge.

PART FOUR Be a Leader: How to Change People Without Giving Offense or Arousing Resentment

1 – IF YOU MUST FIND FAULT, THIS IS THE WAY TO BEGIN

It is always easier to listen to unpleasant things after we have heard some praise of our good points.

Beginning with praise is like the dentist who begins his work with Novocain. The patient still gets a drilling, but the Novocain is pain-killing. A leader will use . . .

PRINCIPLE 1 – Begin with praise and honest appreciation.

2 – HOW TO CRITICIZE….AND NOT BE HATED FOR IT

Calling attention to one’s mistakes indirectly works wonders with sensitive people who may resent bitterly any direct criticism.

An effective way to correct others’ mistakes is . .

PRINCIPLE 2 – Call attention to people’s mistakes indirectly.

3 – TALK ABOUT YOUR OWN MISTAKES FIRST

A good leader follows this principle:

PRINCIPLE 3 – Talk about your own mistakes before criticizing the other person.

4 – NO ONE LIKES TO TAKE ORDERS

An effective leader will use . . .

PRINCIPLE 4 – Ask questions instead of giving direct orders.

5 – LET THE OTHER PERSON SAVE FACE

Even if we are right and the other person is definitely wrong, we only destroy ego
by causing someone to lose face.

I have no right to say or do anything that
diminishes a man in his own eyes. What matters is not what I think of him, but what
he thinks of himself. Hurting a man in his dignity is a crime.

A real leader will always follow . . .

PRINCIPLE 5 – Let the other person save face.

6 – HOW TO SPUR PEOPLE ON TO SUCCESS

Let us praise even the slightest improvement. That inspires the other person to keep on improving.

“Praise is like sunlight to the warm human spirit we cannot flower and grow without it. And yet, while most of us are only too ready to apply to others the cold wind of criticism, we are somehow reluctant to give our fellow the warm sunshine of praise.”

Use of praise instead of criticism is the basic concept of B. F. Skinner’s teachings. This great contemporary psychologist has shown by experiments with animals and with humans that when criticism is minimized and praise emphasized, the good things people do will be reinforced and the poorer things will atrophy for lack of attention.

Everybody likes to be praised, but when praise is specific, it comes across as sincere – not something the other person may be saying just to make one feel good.

Remember, we all crave appreciation and recognition, and will do almost anything to get it. But nobody wants insincerity. Nobody wants flattery.

Abilities wither under criticism; they blossom under encouragement. To become a more effective leader of people, apply . . .

PRINCIPLE 6 – Praise the slightest improvement and praise every improvement. Be “hearty in your approbation and lavish in your praise.”

7 – GIVE A DOG A GOOD NAME

“The average person, can be led readily if you have his or her respect and if you show that you respect that person for some kind of ability.”

In short, if you want to improve a person in a certain aspect, act as though that particular trait were already one of his or her outstanding characteristics.

If you want to excel in that difficult leadership role of changing the attitude or behavior of others, use . . .

PRINCIPLE 7 – Give the other person a fine reputation to live up to.

8 – MAKE THE FAULT SEEM EASY TO CORRECT

If you Tell your child, your spouse, or your employee that he or she is stupid or dumb at a certain thing, has no gift for it, and is doing it all wrong, and you have destroyed almost every incentive to try to improve. But use the opposite technique—be liberal with your encouragement, make the thing seem easy to do, let the other person know that you have faith in his ability to do it, that he has an undeveloped flair for it—and he will practice until the dawn comes in the window in order to excel.

If you want to help others to improve, remember . . .

PRINCIPLE 8 – Use encouragement. Make the fault seem easy to correct.

9 – MAKING PEOPLE GLAD TO DO WHAT YOU WANT

The effective leader should keep the following guidelines in mind when it is necessary to change attitudes or behavior:

  1. Be sincere. Do not promise anything that you cannot deliver. Forget about the
    benefits to yourself and concentrate on the benefits to the other person.
  2. Know exactly what it is you want the other person to do.
  3. Be empathetic. Ask yourself what is it the other person really wants.
  4. Consider the benefits that person will receive from doing what you suggest.
  5. Match those benefits to the other person’s wants.
  6. When you make your request, put it in a form that will convey to the other person
    the idea that he personally will benefit.

People are more likely to do what you would like them to do when you use . . .

PRINCIPLE 9 – Make the other person happy about doing the thing you suggest.

BE A LEADER

A leader’s job often includes changing your people’s attitudes and behavior. Some suggestions to accomplish this:

PRINCIPLE 1 – Begin with praise and honest appreciation.

PRINCIPLE 2 – Call attention to people’s mistakes indirectly.

PRINCIPLE 3 – Talk about your own mistakes before criticizing the other person.

PRINCIPLE 4 – Ask questions instead of giving direct orders.

PRINCIPLE 5 – Let the other person save face.

PRINCIPLE 6 – Praise the slightest improvement and praise every improvement. Be “hearty in your approbation and lavish in your praise.”

PRINCIPLE 7 – Give the other person a fine reputation to live up to.

PRINCIPLE 8 – Use encouragement. Make the fault seem easy to correct.

PRINCIPLE 9 – Make the other person happy about doing the thing you suggest.

CLARITY IS EVERYTHING

There is a story of a hunter who goes to the edge of the woods, closes his eyes, and shoots his rifle into the forest. He then turns to his friend and says, “I sure hope something good runs into that!”


That is how too many people live their lives. They throw themselves at life, like a dog chasing a passing car, seldom catching anything. Most people go through their lives without goals, doing the best they can and just hoping something good will happen to them. But hope is not a strategy. It is a recipe for
failure, if not disaster.achieve

For you to maximize your time, to enjoy the greatest quantity and quality of riches and rewards, you need to take time regularly to think about your goals, especially when you’re experiencing turbulence and rapid change. You need to become intensely goal oriented. Setting goals, making plans, and organizing your life around the things you really want to do and have are the greatest time management tools of all.

Goal setting and personal strategic planning require that you step back and take some time off, away from interruptions and distractions. You then answer several key questions to ensure that what you are doing on the outside is consistent with the person you are on the inside and in harmony with what you really want to achieve.

The Farmers Fortune Or Misfortune: A Story About Meaning!

The Farmers Fortune Or Misfortune: A Story About Meaning!

One day while working out in the fields the farmer’s son fell and broke his leg. The villagers came to the farm and said, ‘My, that’s a great misfortune. Your son has broken his leg: now he can’t help you in the fields.’ The farmer said, ‘It is neither a fortune nor a misfortune.’

A day later, the government troops came to the village looking for young men to conscript into the army. They had to leave the boy behind because his leg was broken. Again, the villagers came to the farm and said, ‘My, that’s a great fortune.’ The farmer replied, ‘It is neither a fortune nor a misfortune.’

Then one day the farmer’s only horse jumped the fence and ran away. The villagers came to the farm and said, ‘What a great misfortune that your horse has run away.’ The farmer said, ‘It is neither a fortune nor a misfortune.’

Two or three days later, the horse came back with a dozen wild horses following behind him. The villagers came to him and said, ‘It’s a great fortune that your horse came back with twelve others.’ The farmer replied, ‘It is neither a fortune nor a misfortune.’

You see the farmer was wise enough to know that everything that was happening had a purpose and meaning beyond the simple appearance of the event that had occurred. So many times we are trapped by the emotion of the events in our lives.

Remember the teaching of this that ‘nothing is long or short, hot or cold, good or bad.’ If you define it as good or bad, you always must ask yourself ‘Good in relation to what or bad in relation to what? Until we decide what the event means to us there is no meaning.

The Original Stone Soup Story!

The Original Stone Soup Story!

Many years ago three soldiers, hungry and weary of battle, came upon a small village. The villagers, suffering a meager harvest and the many years of war, quickly hid what little they had to eat and met the three at the village square, wringing their hands and bemoaning the lack of anything to eat.

The soldiers spoke quietly among themselves and the first soldier then turned to the village elders. ‘Your tired fields have left you nothing to share, so we will share what little we have – the secret of how to make soup from stones.’

Naturally the villagers were intrigued and soon a fire was put to the town’s greatest kettle as the soldiers dropped in three smooth stones. ‘Now this will be a fine soup’, said the second soldier; ‘but a pinch of salt and some parsley would make it wonderful!’ Up jumped a villager, crying ‘What luck! I’ve just remembered where some has been left!’ Then off she ran, returning with an apron full of parsley and a turnip.

As the kettle boiled on, the memory of the village improved: soon barley, carrots, beef and cream had found their way into the great pot, and a cask of wine was rolled into the square as all sat down to feast.

They ate and danced and sang well into the night, refreshed by the feast and their new-found friends.

In the morning the three soldiers awoke to find the entire village standing before them. At their feet lay a satchel of the village’s best breads and cheese. ‘You have given us the greatest of gifts – the secret of how to make soup from stones’, said an elder, ‘and we shall never forget.’ The third soldier turned to the crowd, and said: ‘There is no secret, but this is certain, it is only by sharing that we may make a feast’, then off the soldiers wandered, down the road.

Treasures in Clay Vessels: A Story About Face Value!

Treasures in Clay Vessels-A Story About Face Value!

A man was exploring caves by the seashore. In one of the caves he found a canvas bag with a bunch of hardened clay vessels. It was like someone had rolled balls of clay and left them out in the sun to bake. They didn’t look like much, but they intrigued the man, so he took the bag out of the cave with him.

As he strolled along the beach, he would throw the clay balls one at a time out into the ocean as far as he could. He thought little about it, until he dropped one of the clay balls and it cracked open on a rock.

Inside was a beautiful, precious stone! Excited, the man started breaking open the remaining clay vessels. Each contained a similar treasure. He found thousands of dollars’ worth of jewels in the 20 or so clay balls he had left. Then it struck him.

He had been on the beach a long time. He had thrown maybe 50 or 60 of the clay balls with their hidden treasure into the ocean waves.

Instead of thousands of dollars in treasure, he could have taken home tens of thousands, but he had just thrown it away!

It’s like that with people. We look at someone, maybe even ourselves, and we see the external clay vessel. It doesn’t look like much from the outside. It isn’t always beautiful or sparkling, so we discount it. There is a treasure in each one of us. If we take the time to get to know that person, then the clay begins to peel away and the brilliant gem begins to shine forth.

May we not come to the end of our lives and find out that we have thrown away a fortune in friendships because the gems were hidden in bits of clay.

The Richest Man In The Valley: A Story About Wealth!

The Richest Man In The Valley: A Story About Wealth!

A rich landowner named Carl often rode around his vast estate so he could congratulate himself on his great wealth. One day while riding around his estate on his favorite horse, he saw Hans, an old tenant farmer.

Hans was sitting under a tree when Carl rode by. Hans said, ‘I was just thanking God for my food.’ Carl protested, ‘If that is all I had to eat, I wouldn’t feel like giving thanks.’ Hans replied, ‘God has given me everything I need, and I am thankful for it.’ The old farmer added, ‘It is strange you should come by today because I had a dream last night.

In my dream a voice told me, ‘The richest man in the valley will die tonight.’ I don’t know what it means, but I thought I ought to tell you.’ Carl snorted, ‘Dreams are nonsense,’ and galloped away, but he could not forget Hans’ words: ‘The richest man in the valley will die tonight.’

He was obviously the richest man in the valley, so he invited his doctor to his house that evening. Carl told the doctor what Hans had said. After a thorough examination, the doctor told the wealthy landowner, ‘Carl, you are as strong and healthy as a horse. There is no way you are going to die tonight.’

Nevertheless, for assurance, the doctor stayed with Carl, and they played cards through the night. The doctor left the next morning and Carl apologized for becoming so upset over the old man’s dream.

At about nine o’clock, a messenger arrived at Carl’s door. ‘What is it?’ Carl demanded. The messenger explained, ‘It’s about old Hans. He died last night in his sleep.

When You Thought I Wasn’t Looking: A Former Child’s Story!

When You Thought I Wasn’t Looking: A Former Child’s Story!

A message every adult should read, because children are watching you and doing as you do, not as you say.

When you thought I wasn’t looking, I saw you hang my first painting on the refrigerator and I immediately wanted to paint another one.

When you thought I wasn’t looking I saw you were feeding food to a stray cat, and I learned that it was good to be kind to animals.

When you thought I wasn’t looking, I saw you make my favourite cake for me and I learned that the little things can be the special things in life.

When you thought I wasn’t looking I heard you say a prayer, and I knew there is a God I could always talk to and I learned to trust in God.

When you thought I wasn’t looking, I saw you make a meal and take it to a friend who was sick, and I learned that we all have to help take care of each other.

When you thought I wasn’t looking, I saw you give of your time and money to help people who had nothing and I learned that those who have something should give to those who don’t.

When you thought I wasn’t looking, I saw you take care of our house and everyone in it and I learned we have to take care of what we are given.

When you thought I wasn’t looking, I saw how you handled your responsibilities, even when you didn’t feel good and I learned that I would have to be responsible when I grow up.

When you thought I wasn’t looking, I saw tears come from your eyes and I learned that sometimes things hurt, but it’s alright to cry.

When you thought I wasn’t looking, I saw that you cared and I wanted to be everything that I could be.

When you thought I wasn’t looking, I learned most of life’s lessons that I need to know to be a good and productive person when I grow up.

When you thought I wasn’t looking, I looked at you and wanted to say, ‘Thanks for all the things I saw when you thought I wasn’t looking.’

Each of us influences the life of a child. How will you touch the life of someone today?

Sleep When The Wind Blows: A Story About Being Prepared!

Sleep When The Wind Blows: A Story About Being Prepared!

Years ago a farmer owned land along the Atlantic seacoast. He constantly advertised for hired-hands, however, most people were reluctant to work on farms along the Atlantic.

They dreaded the awful storms that raged across the Atlantic, wreaking havoc on the buildings and crops.

As the farmer interviewed applicants for the job, he received a steady stream of refusals. Finally, a short, thin man, well past middle age, approached the farmer.

‘Are you a good farm hand?’ the farmer asked him.

‘Well, I can sleep when the wind blows,’ answered the little man.

Although puzzled by this answer, the farmer, desperate for help decided to hired him.

The little man worked well around the farm, busy from dawn to dusk, and the farmer felt well satisfied with the his work. Then one night the wind howled in loudly from offshore.

Jumping out of bed, the farmer grabbed a lantern and rushed next door to the hired hand’s sleeping quarters. He shook the little man and yelled, ‘Get up! A storm is coming! Tie things down before they blow away!’

The little man rolled over in bed and said firmly, ‘No sir, told you, I can sleep when the wind
blows.’

Enraged by the response, the farmer was tempted to fire him on the spot. Instead, he hurried outside to prepare for the storm.

To his amazement, he discovered that all of the haystacks had been covered with tarpaulins. The cows were in the barn, the chickens were in the coop and the doors were barred. The shutters were tightly secured. Everything was tied down. Nothing could blow away. The farmer then understood what his hired hand meant, so he returned to his bed to also sleep while the wind blew.

When you’re prepared spiritually, mentally and physically, you have nothing to fear.

Can you sleep when the wind blows through your life?

A Father Son Conversation: Story About Making Time!

A Father Son Conversation: Story About Making Time!

A man came home from work late again, tired and irritated, to find his 5 year old son waiting for him at the door. ‘Daddy, may I ask you a question?’

‘Yeah, sure, what is it?’ replied the man.

‘Daddy, how much money do you make an hour?’

‘That’s none of your business! What makes you ask such a thing?’ the man said angrily.

‘I just want to know. Please tell me, how much do you make an hour?’ pleaded the little boy.

‘If you must know, I make $20.00 an hour.’

‘Oh,’ the little boy replied, head bowed.

Looking up, he said, ‘Daddy, may I borrow $10.00 please?’

The father was furious. ‘If the only reason you wanted to know how much money I make is just so you can borrow some to buy a silly toy or some other nonsense, then you march yourself straight to your room and go to bed. Think about why you’re being so selfish. I work long, hard hours every day and don’t have time for such childish games.’

The little boy quietly went to his room and shut the door. The man sat down and started to get even madder about the little boy’s questioning. How dare him ask such questions only to get some money.

After an hour or so, the man had calmed down, and started to think he may have been a little hard on his son. Maybe there was something he really needed to buy with that $10.00, and he really didn’t ask for money very often. The man went to the door of the little boy’s room and opened the door.

Are you asleep son?’ he asked.

‘No daddy, I’m awake,’ replied the boy.

‘I’ve been thinking, maybe I was too hard on you earlier,’ said the man. ‘It’s been a long day and I took my aggravation out on you. Here’s that $10.00 you asked for.’

The little boy sat straight up, beaming. ‘Oh, thank you daddy!’ he yelled. Then, reaching under his pillow, he pulled out some more crumpled up bills.

The man, seeing that the boy already had money, started to get angry again. The little boy slowly counted out his money, then looked up at the man. ‘Why did you want more money if you already had some?’ the father grumbled.

‘Because I didn’t have enough, but now I do,’ the little boy replied. ‘Daddy, I have $20.00 now. Can I buy an hour of your time?

Dust If You Must: A Story About Living Life!

Dust If You Must: A Story About Living Life!

A house becomes a home when you can write ‘I love you’ on the furniture. I can’t tell you how many countless hours that I have spent cleaning. I used to spend at least 8 hours every weekend making sure things were just perfect – ‘in case someone came over.’ Then I realized one day that no-one came over; they were all out living life and having fun!

Now, when people visit, I find no need to explain the condition of my home. They are more interested in hearing about the things I’ve been doing while I was away living life and having fun.

If you haven’t quite figured this out as yet, please heed this advice. Life is short, so enjoy it!

Dust if you must, but wouldn’t it be better to paint a picture or write a letter, bake a cake or plant a seed, or even ponder the difference between want and need?

Dust if you must, but there’s not much time, with rivers to swim and mountains to climb, music to hear and books to read, friends to cherish and life to lead.

Dust if you must, but the worlds out there with the sun in your eyes, the wind in your hair, a flutter of snow, a shower of rain. This day will not come around again.

Dust if you must, but bear in mind, old age will come and it’s not kind. And when you go – and go you must, you, yourself will make more dust! It’s not what you gather, but what you scatter that tells what kind of life you have lived.

and remember, a layer of dust protects the wood beneath it.