January 2010

From Rita Emmett
Author of The Procrastinator's Handbook and
The Clutter-Busting Handbook


A Poem for the New Year

Isn’t it strange
that princes and kings,
And clowns that caper
in sawdust rings,
And common people
like you and me
Are builders for eternity?

Each is given
A bag of tools,
A shapeless mass,
A book of rules;
And each must make –
Ere life is flown –
A stumbling block
Or a steppingstone.

Message from Rita

Let’s make 2010 the year of the Stepping Stones.

This poem and the following story came into my life 10 years apart. I don’t know who wrote them but I presume they are not by the same person, yet they both have the idea of taking whatever comes our way and making it a way to step up not fall down.
Here is the story:

One day a farmer's donkey fell down into a well. The animal cried piteously for hours as the farmer tried to figure out what to do. Finally, he decided the animal was old, and the well needed to be covered up anyway; it just wasn't worth it to retrieve the donkey.

He invited all his neighbors to come over and help him to shovel dirt into the well. At first, the donkey realized what was happening and cried horribly. Then, to everyone's amazement he quieted down.

A few shovel loads later, the farmer finally looked down the well. He was astonished at what he saw. With each shovel of dirt that hit his back, the donkey was doing something amazing.
He would shake it off and take a step up..

As the farmer's neighbors continued to shovel dirt on top of the animal, he would shake it off and take a step up.

Pretty soon, everyone was amazed as the donkey stepped up over the edge of the well, and happily trotted off!

Life is going to shovel dirt on you, all kinds of dirt. The trick to getting out of the well is to shake it off and take a step up. Each of our troubles is a stepping stone. We can get out of the deepest wells just by not stopping, never giving up! Shake it off and take a step up.

If you know who wrote this story or the poem above it, please let me know. They deserve to receive credit for these ideas. What more can I add? Let’s make 2010 the year of the Stepping Stones -- regardless of what is thrown at us.
Happy New Year.


Great New Year’S Idea From A Reader

Dear Rita, Here is our plan for 2010. Three of us decided to conquer clutter so we are going to be “Accountability Partners”. We all bought copies of The Clutter-Busting Handbook and will meet every other Saturday either for breakfast or by phone to set our next clutter busting goals.
At each meeting, we will report on how we did on our last goal and will set a new goal. All goals have to be small -- like you always say -- not the whole office, just one stack on the floor -- not the whole garage, just the boxes on one shelf.
Rita, you were smart to put the sentimental clutter chapter early in the book. That is a problem for all 3 of us and our families. Thanks for giving us hope and the book to help us do it.
Curt Hansen, Lansing, MI


Free Teleclass Coming Up

FEB. 17, 2010
Blast Away Procrastination: Get It Done Now
Wed, Feb 17 at 8 ET, 7 Central time
Presented by Hilton Johnson Productions
Rita Emmett will be interviewed giving tips and strategies to help
break the procrastination habit.
Cost: Free
More information to come later

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