Fortunately, no two persons are exactly alike. If they were, the result

would be the same and the everyday acts leading to a result would be the

same. Nature, acquiescing in the Divine plan, has a different line of

action and result for every individual which she creates. We find

unlimited variety in man. The seat of activity is the mind and the first

portion of the body to be acted upon by the mind is the brain. One man

> possesses more convolutions of brain than does another, and the fibre

which extends from the gray matter to manipulate the many organs of the

body which we constantly use is finer in one organism than in another.

We recognize differences in classes of people and call one class

nervous, and another, phlegmatic. So strongly are we influenced by

public opinion that we honestly believe that a "slow" man cannot reach

so great result in a lifetime as can a "quick" man. General opinion is

usually wrong and it most certainly is in this case. Nature has a work

for each kind and each individual to do, the summing up of which, is the

result of that life, and if the gifts of each individual have been

properly used the result is success in life. It may be believed that the

usefulness of each individual, if the life of each is perfectly carried

out, will be equal to that of all others. The apparent success may not

be real success.

The active brain directs a responsive body. The more active the brain,

the more active can the body be made. To make the body useful at all,

the motion of its members must be well understood and perfectly

commanded. Herein lies the secret of success or failure. All want--not

wish--success. (A wish may be a whim.) The saying "One thing at a time,

etc.," has become obnoxious to us years ago, but in the idea contained

in that lies the path to greatest activity. The active mind spreads

itself. It schemes. All the plans which it suggests seem possible. Why

not carry them all out? Merely because life is not long enough, nor

mental and physical endurance strong enough, to do even the preliminary

work of one tenth of the schemes which can come to an active mind in one

day. Cut them all off. It might be well to say "First come, first

served," and take the first which comes and carry that to success,

concentrating all thought and force upon its accomplishment. It may be

a Higher Power which put the thought of that plan first into mind.

Yet more narrowly would we draw the line which surrounds our activity.

One must make the most of his force and strength. In the case of every

man, woman and child living there is enormous waste of power. Much more

is wasted than is used. We have in years past stood beside Niagara and

thought if that power, apparently going to waste, could be used for

moving machinery it could run the mills of the world, forgetting, or not

knowing, that, in getting to the Falls, we wasted enough mental and

physical force to run our human machinery for a week. The thought flew,

changing probably twice a second, to how many different things in the

hour before. Computation is easy. In the sixteen working hours of a day,

perhaps, we think of 2000 things. Isn't that wasteful? Before the true

plan of nature is carried out some (if not three-quarters) of this waste

must be prevented. What has the body done in the hour before reaching

Niagara? The hands have wandered aimlessly, the feet have tapped the

floor, the watch has been looked at a dozen times, the hat taken off and

put on again, the card-case opened, half-looked at, and shut, and each

act, with twenty more, has been repeated again and again. It was waste

activity. It must be overcome. Nature never intended you and me to be

wasteful. These actions of mind, brain and body, are useful in their

places, but we misuse them, using up strength and power. Night comes and

we are tired out, or think we are, which amounts to the same thing. Who

said "One thing at a time" was obnoxious to him? To gain our greatest

power we must bring ourselves down to "one thing at a time." Put your

mind on that one thing. Are you sharpening a pencil just now? Don't read

a book at the same time. Are you placing your hat on your head? Don't

brush dust off the coat. Are these things trivial? Nothing is trivial in

nature's plan. Do not, in impatience, without trial, cast aside these

suggestions. Even give one hour each day for one week as a trial to

doing what you do, perfectly, and think of it as a trial. The increased

result in mental and physical activity will demonstrate the wisdom of

the advice.

Strength is essential to successful labor. Wildly beating the air in

undirected effort is the element of greatest weakness. We smile at the

antics of two chickens in their fight in the farmyard. In a few minutes

they wear themselves out and go off to rest. Are not we much like them?

Do we not use up our strength in useless effort? Then, how often we rush

off to the gymnasium or to the drug-store in the vain hope of regaining

our strength. New strength is not to be found in either place. It is

within ourselves all the time. Stop the expenditure and permit

re-cuperation through concentration. Don't go lie down. Don't take a

nap. Stop right where you are and bring the thought down to one thing,

strength. For the moment allow the body to remain still. Think

strength, desire strength, command strength! It is yours. It belongs to

you. It is all around you. It will take possession of you if you permit

it. What say you? That it will not come at your bidding? Are you sure?

Have you cleared the mind of the cobwebs--the two different things per

second which can come into it? Have you? Until you have, don't give up

the test. Concentrate the thought upon strength, if that is what you

want, and it will come.

Impatience is waste. You cannot afford it. It is too expensive. We are

all children. We see a toy and we must have it instantly, even if it is,

as it often is, a sharp tool, which cuts our hands. If that which we

wish belongs to us, or is to be given to us, it will come in its time.

We wish to do something now. We haven't the means, or we don't see our

way clearly to do it. We bemoan our hard luck, and can't see why we

can't have it. Just so does the child about the toy. Wait patiently, and

if, in nature's plan, the thing is to come to us, it will come, and we

can't prevent it. It will seem as if it came itself. Impatience merely

wears us out and uses up strength which nature wishes us to use in some

other way. Obey nature and carry out her purposes.

Activity which is useful, comes through directed effort. There may be

seeming activity which is worse than sluggishness, and which is

certainly not desirable. Directed effort comes best through calm mind

and responsive body. Silence and quietness, self-imposed, prepare the

way to directed effort. Cease everything, even thinking, so far as it

can be stopped, and remain passive thirty seconds. Then another thirty

seconds. Who cannot take one minute out of each hour in the day for

preparing the mind and body for greater strength and activity? When

night has come and we lay the body down to rest there are a few minutes

when it can have the best preparation for the activity of the next day.

The few minutes before sleep carries us into unconsciousness are dear

and sweet minutes, if rightly used. Then can the thought, which has been

sent to thousands of things during the day, be brought back to its

proper place. It should be centred upon one thing. The estimate is that

the mind cannot be kept on one thing more than six seconds; but it can

be returned to that one thing for several periods of six seconds each.

We do not have the chance to return it many times, for sleep seizes us.

Let the thought selected be a pleasant one; of some happy spot or view;

a sunset or refreshing shower. It is better to select something from

nature rather than man, for such thought is likely to be unalloyed. The

last thing at night, if pleasant, tends to give us the calmest rest and

best prepares us for the next day. The well and strong body can be

active and the temperament of the individual makes comparatively little

difference. In this we may all take courage. Every thoughtful person has

had an occasional sad thought over his apparent impotence. No one need

use less than his normal strength and activity.