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Once upon a time, a very strong woodcutter asked for a job in a timber company, and he got it. The pay was very good, and so were the working conditions. He also thought his boss to be an amazing and respectful man. For those reasons, the woodcutter was determined that he would do his best no matter what.

His boss gave him an ax and showed him the area where he needed to work.

The first day, the woodcutter brought in an impressive 18 trees.

“Congratulations,” the boss said. “Keep it up!”

Very compelled by these words, the woodcutter tried even harder the next day, but he could only manage to bring in 15 trees this time. The third day he tried even harder, but he could only bring 10 trees. Day after day, he noticed he was bringing fewer and fewer trees.

The woodcutter was confused, he was working so hard. “I must be losing my strength”, the woodcutter thought to himself. He went to the boss and apologized profusely, saying that he could not understand what was going on and that he genuinely was trying his best.

“When was the last time you sharpened your ax?” the boss asked carefully.

“Sharpen? I had no time to sharpen my ax. I have been very busy trying to cut down trees…”

One of the most common problems with Internet Marketers today, especially veteran Internet Marketers, is that they work so hard and do so much but forget to take time out to ‘sharpen their ax’. Take your mind as the ax in this instance, are you learning anything new? When is the last time you paused to keep updated with what is going on today? Have you updated your knowledge base?

Because all the work in the world is no use if the wisdom is not behind it. The problem is, people think it takes too long to learn all they can before they start and so they tend to skip the full learnings/training required to be great. And if they are fully informed, they forget to update that knowledge and then stagnate.

My advice is this – if you ever stop learning or won’t listen to new information coming through or are too stubborn to change and upgrade all that you know – you will never master it. Mastery is in knowing that you don’t know and being open to new methods, new nuggets of wisdom, and new advice. Stay open because nothing stays the same, everything changes.

The market changes, the approach changes, people’s desires are shaped by society and all of its changes and you will change too. Nothing stays the same so you must remain open and keep learning. You are an unfinished product in yourself, you will never be finished because there is always something to learn and places that you can grow and expand your knowledge base.

It’s a simple message but a vital one – do not get stuck in your ways no matter how much of an expert you are. You have only one ax and it is the key to your whole business – sharpen it from time to time.