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Tomorrow is promised to no one …

Did you grow up hearing all those quirky little sayings that families come out with. You probably heard them all the time but then, they were more comforting than instructive. Later, you may have started to see the little gems of wisdom in each one. But then, did you start to think of them like the quotes people trot out at presentations, or something out of a Christmas cracker. Short pithy sayings with a hint of truth. We seem to need things like this.

When I think back to my childhood, I remember ones like “in for a penny, in for a pound”, “a bad penny always turns up” or “just like a bad penny”, etc. I think I have forgotten most of them.

My favourite of all time however must be “a sharp knife and a clean conscience” but it stems from much later in my life. It is a saying that I have applied throughout my career. It means to deal with the matter in hand swiftly and deliberately, and don’t look back or dwell upon it. Don’t let it fester. Generally, if you make the wrong decision, the consequences are either reversible or not that serious. That is not always the case. The time I first came across it was when working with young (male) calves. An irreversible process. Enough said.

I think the merit of these short sayings is not necessarily in the actual words but in the feelings and emotions that they evoke that either direct your actions or confirm your resolve in what you are planning.

There is one that I came across but when I went looking for it, I discovered that there are numerous different versions. So, here is the basic version.

“Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow is promised to no one. We only have today”.

It sounds full of natural wisdom but what does it mean? It is actually full of contradiction. Could it mean that we should party today because we may have no tomorrow. You could end up partying every day for years. We all know that “there are only two days in the year that you cannot do anything … yesterday and tomorrow”.  I think that both sayings are directing you and me to take action today and not hesitate.

I don’t know about you, but I am always building for tomorrow, and that means effort, dedication and action today. I have my personal and business goals and that is what I am working towards. I try to be “bright and bushy tailed” but if I should “pop my clogs” along the way, then “Que sera sera”.

Alan Long

The Long Partnership

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