As a teacher and principal, I loved to add to the vocabulary of the students I served. Enriching the minds and language of others is always important. As I experienced my brain injury and began my recovery, understanding how to continue to work on these skills daily is an essential part of life.
Compounding is the process by which we add interest to a fixed sum, which then earns interest on the previous sum and the newly added interest, then earns interest on that amount, and so on ad infinitum. It is an exponential effect rather than a linear or additive effect. Money is not the only thing that compounds.
Some two and a half millennia ago, in what is now Southern Italy, there lived a legendary wrestler by the name of Milo of Croton. Over time Milo was able to compound his strength by beginning to carry a small calf on his shoulders. He returned each day to do the same thing. As he returned, the calf would grow by 2 pounds.
Milo continued to carry the calf on his shoulders for the next few years as the calf developed into a young bull. Milo began with a minor calf but remained to do the same routine, gradually increasing the weight he was lifting and, over time, compounded into what he is famous for having done.
“A six-time Olympic Champion, Milo’s career spanned 24 years, during which he was undoubtedly the best wrestler of his generation. He is said to have been able to carry a bull on his shoulders and to have burst a band about his brow by simply inflating the veins on his temples.”
It’s been said that Albert Einstein considered compounding to be one of the world's wonders. I am not sure if there is evidence of this claim, but compounding is something I did learn from my dad at an early age.
My dad was not an educated man, but he did understand numbers and how to save his money. He would go to the bank weekly, and I would tag along. The ladies would talk to him about all of the interest rates and the compounding rates he could get for the CD’s he wanted to place his money in and for the period. I learned a lot during those banking trips when I received the best suckers!
Compounding during those weekly trips to the bank were ideas, relationships, and values. Learning how to communicate with others, build relationships with others and the importance of taking care of your finances was built into the core of who I am. It is just one small part of what my parents taught me in my experiences in my life journey.
I opened my post with questions; I love always to ask them. So, I hope you are still asking yourself about “compound” and what it means. Then, what does it mean to those you serve?
As we move forward together, let’s try to make a plan on how to compound our efforts to multiply over time so as we reach one individual, they reach two more, and those two reach four more each as it is repeated unlimited amounts of time.
Many of us struggle with reaching our goals because we overestimate what we can do during a single day and underestimate the progress we can make over long periods. When I listen to others or when I reflect on my own goals.
As a young, ambitious girl, I wanted to save everyone. I will not lie; I still wish to too! I know with my injuries, aging and limited contact, I will not be able to do all I dream, but I will do my best.
Rather than setting small, realistic goals daily, the framework that allows us to build the habits required for success, and ambitious long-term goals, we try to lift the world on our shoulders from day one.
I spend time building lots of content, and sometimes, I may repeat myself. When I did, it was essential to hear twice. Keep being part of the solution daily in a world that needs you.