The secret to ongoing professional growth

The Secret to Ongoing Professional Growth

Dashrath Manjhi was a man who set out to do the impossible.

He was a lowly labourer in the isolated Indian town of Gehlaur. Tragically, his wife was badly injured from a mountain fall and because of the mountain terrain, she was unable to access medical services and died. Dashrath decided to change things and carve a road into the mountain so that his village could more easily access important medical services.

Dashrath wanted to transform the mountain into an accessible path, but all he had was a hammer and chisel. What he lacked with tools and machinery, he made up for it with grit.

For the next 22 years, he hammered and chiseled a road through the mountain.

He faced ridicule from family and friends.

Yet he persisted.

In the end, he completed his path through the mountains in 1982. In the end, Dashrath’s work cut down travel to the next village from 55 km to 15 km decreasing time and effort to reach important services.

He became known as the Mountain Man and a film was produced honouring his perseverance in 2015.

What an impossible task when you consider that he only had a hammer and chisel!

Mountain Man

The story struck me with the power of small, persistent action.

I’ve realized how easy it is to slip into believing that growth and development come from mountaintop experiences. While those experiences are wonderful, it is in the daily work where transformation takes place.

I’ve been leaning into the concept of leveraging small persistent daily actions to shape my personal and professional growth.

Whether it’s improved emotional regulation, sustained energy and work enjoyment, I’ve been realizing how necessary day-to-day actions are to see improvement.

But here’s the rub.

There is no magic switch to unlock these outcomes.

It is in the daily action where the magic happens.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t feel like magic.

It feels tedious.

It feels uneventful.

I’ve realized that embracing this reality helps me take the daily steps to move forward.

I hope the story of Dashrath inspires you to take a fresh look at how you can further harness the power of small daily action.

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