Lessons Learned 2019

These are most of my lessons learned for 2019 sorted into general categories.


  • Genesis 21:19. God opened the eyes of Hagar to see the water around her. The blessing and provision were already there. She could not see it. Pray for God to open my eyes to see blessings and provisions around me.
  • Leviticus 26:16, one of the judgments of the Lord is consumption.
  • Deuteronomy 7:22. God had a plan for His people. It would be fulfilled “little by little” requiring time and patience.
  • Deuteronomy 29:4 The Lord has not given some people a heart to perceive or eyes to see.
  • Proverbs 9:7-8. Do not try to teach, correct, or rebuke a scorner or wicked person. Stick to teaching and training the simple and wise only.
  • Joshua 3:7 and 4:14. God began to magnify Joshua on a specific day (Joshua 3:7). Joshua spent his entire life up to that point preparing and becoming the man he was. There was no change in Joshua on the day God magnified him, just a change in the people’s perception of him (directed by God).
  • Judges 10:16 God was grieved because His people were in misery. God wants us to have joy.
  • I Samuel 4:18 Eli was “heavy.” Why did God include this detail? Was Eli heavy because he was lazy? Was he lazy because he did not walk with God and have God’s Spirit empowering him? Or did he not walk with God because he was lazy?
  • Hebrews 5:7 God will use suffering to teach us obedience.
  • II Kings 4:2 “…thine handmaid hath not any thing in the house, save a pot of oil.” Several times in the Bible people think they have “nothing” and God sees that they have all they need.
  • Job 42:10 The Lord was pleased by Job praying for his friends.
  • Psalm 55:21 “The words of his mouth were smoother than butter, but war in his heart: his words were softer than oil, yet were they drawn swords.” – a passive-aggressive person.
  • Psalm 78:33 “Therefore their days did he consume in vanity, and their years in trouble.” Living in vanity is a judgment of God.
  • Isaiah 50:4 …he wakeneth mine ear to hear as the learned.
  • I Corinthians 13. How much of what I do is based on love versus logic or just because it is right?
  • God is working when it doesn’t look like God is working. -Ray Johnston
  • God may make you wait until your character catches up with your gifting.
  • Nothing can happen through you until something happens in you.
  • You will never raise people up until your faith raises your expectations up. You will never raise yourself up until your faith raises your expectations up.
  • Light is a particle and a wave. Correlation to God being light.
  • Prayer is an end in itself.

Personal Development

  • If you are willing to do only what is easy, life will be hard. If you are willing to do what is hard, life will be easy.
  • Most big goals we set require us to make 100s of tiny changes. That is why we often do not accomplish them.
  • The greatest asset you can possess is the desire for knowledge and the willingness to earn it. -Andrew Carnegie from The Wisdom of Success
  • By focusing on the outcome we ignore the process. Focus on the process. (from Presence by Amy Cuddy)
  • The more you bring into your life, the more you dilute what you are doing. Learn to say no.
  • Take a minute to look at your goals. Then look at what you are doing and see if it matches your goals. -One Minute Manager
  • Successful people do daily what unsuccessful people do occasionally. -John Maxwell
  • There is no impact without contact. The closer you are to people, the greater your potential for impact.
  • If you don’t control your emotions, someone else will.
  • The key to exhilaration in a job is not the task itself, but the state of mind created as you do the work.
  • Powerful people speak slowly. Presence by Amy Cuddy
  • We are leaving the industrial economy and entering the connection economy.  (Leap First by Seth Godin)
  • Listening is about how you make the other person feel.
  • Warning signs of an overbooked life are constant clutter, addiction to hurry, extreme multitasking, relationship fatigue, and a generally diminished quality of life. (Confident Parenting by Jim Burns)

Philosophy or Psychology

  • If you never feel like giving up; your dreams are too small. If you never feel like quitting; you need to set larger goals.
  • Great expectations create great capabilities. -Ray Dalio
  • Knowing others is intelligence; knowing yourself is true wisdom. Mastering others is strength; mastering yourself is true power.
  • Never complain about what you allow. – John Maxwell
  • Give people your best but don’t carry the weight of their choices. -John Maxwell
  • If you can’t trust everything a person says, you can’t trust anything they say. -John Maxwell
  • Andrew Carnegie’s major motive in life was “making men more useful to themselves and others.” The Wisdom of Success
  • The life of sensation is the life of greed, it requires more and more. The life of the spirit requires less and less, time is ample and its passage sweet.
  • John Maxwell on the seasons of life.
    • Winter -Planning
    • Spring – Planting
    • Summer – Perspiring
    • Autumn – Producing
  • Whatever you think about, you bring about.
  • Education alleviates uncertainty. – Peter Mallouk
  • Three types of people: those who can see, those who can see when shown,  and those who will never see. From my podcast notes on How to Master Essentialism.
  • The more people say “I” the less sure of themselves they are. Presence by Amy Cuddy
  • The high-status person looks out at the world; the low-status person is looking at himself. Presence by Amy Cuddy
  • I would rather be known for what I am for than what I am against.
  • Live as if you would die tomorrow; learn as if you will live forever. (The Virgin Way)
  • Be passionately engaged and enjoy every minute of what you do. (The Virgin Way)
  • From Meditations by Marcus Aurelius (I don’t necessarily recommend the book but did get a few things from it)
    • You can’t master the arts of reading and writing until you’ve studied them. This applies even more to those who would master the art of living.
    • I marvel at how men love themselves more than others, while at the same time caring more about what others think of them than what they think of themselves.
    • What is your own true good?
      He who loves fame, considers it to lay in another man’s reactions.
      He who loves pleasure, his own sensations.
      He who has understanding considers his own acts to be his own good.
    • It is very possible to be a great man and be recognized as such by no one.
    • Short-lived are both the praiser and the praised.
  • Worrying is like praying for something you don’t want to happen. -Greg McKeown
  • What the world needs is people who have come alive. -Howard Thurman


  • Andrew Carnegie said making better men is a greater motive than making money. The Wisdom of Success
  • People have to make a choice between better or safer. Most people choose safer. If employees are looking for safer (which most are) and I, as a boss, am looking for better, that doesn’t work. (Leap First by Seth Godin)
  • A boss that works 12 hour days is usually a sign that the boss is not managing their time well. -Richard Branson (The Virgin Way)
  • The savviest executives know the value of sacrificing the seemingly urgent for the truly important.
  • Great leaders are great simplifiers. (The Virgin Way)
  • Make a commitment to spend quality time with your people every week. (The Virgin Way)
  • Poor leaders have an aversion to facing confrontation. (The Virgin Way)
  • Three types of people: from How to Master EssentialismThose who can see.
    • Those who can see when shown.
    • Those who will never see.

General Knowledge

  • The triple point of water. A temperature at which water is liquid, solid, and vapor co-existing at the same time.
  • Testing conducted on medical patients in a vegetative state. Asking them to think about playing tennis as a ‘yes’ response or entering their home as a ‘no’ response. In some cases, this enabled communication with patients answering yes and no questions by measuring brain activity via FMRI.
  • People rarely want the thing you are selling, they want the result of the thing you are selling. Example: compare the motives of a person who buys a $50 watch compared to a person who buys a $50,000 watch. Telling time is not the core motivation.
  • Richard Branson writes down his thoughts on notebooks and has 100s of them from his last 40 years.
  • Science is doing testing on non-responsive patients by having them think about playing tennis for a “yes” answer and entering their home for a “no” answer. They can communicate with some patients this way with FMRI.

Most of these lessons learned are from books in my 2019 Reading List.

Other Lessons Learned Lists

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