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22 posts from June 2013

Time Management and Self Assessment

Judaism's greatest achievers excelled in time management. It's mind-boggling to ponder what the Rambam (Maimonides) accomplished in 69 years (1135-1204) on earth. He wrote his classic 14-volume "Mishna Torah", which boils down the entire Talmud into a compendium of practical Jewish law. This classic work is one of the three main texts that are the basis of The Code of Jewish Law as we know it today. The Rambam also codified our Thirteen Principles of faith. In addition, he was one of history's greatest physicians. His nutrition and health guidelines are followed to this day.

And what about the holy Ariza'l and Rebbe Nachman of Breslev? Neither reached the age of 40, and look what they accomplished in life. Again, successful time management was their secret.

My beloved teacher Rabbi Shalom Arush taught me a lesson in life that he learned from Rabbi Levi Yitzchok Bender, of saintly and blessed memory: Before you do something, ask yourself, "What is the consequence of this action? Will it make me a better person? Will it bring me closer to Hashem?" If you can't answer both questions in the affirmative, you are about to waste your valuable time.

One of the most important areas of our daily self-assessment should be time management. Ultimately, we'll all have to explain to Hashem what we did with each minute of our day, anyway. So let's do our best to avoid all the wasted time and inconsequential activities that eat away at our ever-so-valuable time.

The way to improve our management and utilization of time is to ask ourselves at the end of every day, "How did I utilize the last 24 hours?" By assessing ourselves daily, we greatly improve our utilization of time. This was the Chafetz Chaim's secret - he devoted a whole two hours a day to personal prayer, where he forced himself to account for every minute of the day. May we follow in his holy footsteps!


The Power of Giving

Shavua Tov - a happy new week!

The power of a mitzva grows exponentially in accordance with the intent of giving that fuels the mitzva. We must educate ourselves to give, and that way, we can educate our children to give as well. Giving is the basis of love and the root of holiness, which invokes limitless Divine abundance. We sure need it this week, with the Three Weeks beginning this Tuesday. Enjoy this 44-minute shiur - it's a must-hear...