Friday, October 01, 2004

4qtr2004 Feature Article: What's in an A.C.R.O.N.Y.M.?

I've come to realize something about myself - I really do like acronyms. They're really helpful in explaining/remembering things. In the article I just submitted to the ASTD - the American Society of Training and Development - I even included with a few choice new ones. ("ASTD", of course, is a special kind acronym, called an 'initialism', or an acronym formed from initial letters.) When the article is published, I'll be sure to put a link to it in my weblog.

Someone suggested that I should create an acronym for the word ... acronym. But in doing my research, I found that many have traveled this path before me, as the following sampling indicates:
  • ACRONYM - A Clever Re-Organization Nudges Your Memory
  • ACRONYM - A Concise Recollection of Nomenclature Yielding Mnemonics
  • ACRONYM - A Cross Reference Of Notes Yielding Messages
  • ACRONYM - Abbreviated Coded Rendition Of Name Yielding Meaning
  • ACRONYM - Alphabetical Character Rendition Of a Name Yielding a Meaning
  • ACRONYM - Alphabetically Coded Reminder of Names You Misremember
  • ACRONYM - Alphanumeric Code for Remembering Odd Names You Make up
  • ACRONYM - A Contrived Reduction Of Nouns Yielding Mnemonics
  • ACRONYM - Abbreviation by CROpping Names that Yields Meaning

Yet in reading through these, I was inspired to still make one up myself that was more in the spirit of the Not Just Talk! heading, that is, getting more from your Untapped Potential. So here's what I came up with:

  • ACRONYM - Anyone Can Retain what's Optimum in a New-York-Minute

So, as we're officially inside 4qrt2004, I invite you to focus on what it is that YOU want to retain by using this three-step process:

Step One - Remember

Looking back, ask yourself the following: What did you do that helped certain things turn out particularly well this year? What were your Lessons Learned from the things that didn't go as planned? Write down your answers - thoughtfully and honestly - even if it's only in note-form. If you do this, you'll find you've developed a fairly good roadmap for your future success - simply do MORE of what worked, and LESS or what didn't work. There's another critical step, though - one that most people forget to do. That's why there's more than just one step to this two-step process.

Step Two - Remember to Remember

It sounds redundant, but it's really not. And anyone who's ever been coached by me can attest to the importance of remembering what it is you want to remember. You see most people forget what they want to remember. That's why they end up making so many of the same mistakes over and over (and over) again. Vernon Sanders Law said, "Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards." The thing is, though, if you don't learn the lesson - and don't remember the lesson - there's no alternative but to re-test you! Over and over (and over) again. The choice is yours.

Step Three - Create your own Acronym

This is where you tie it all together. Pick a 3-, or 4-letter word that exemplifies what you hope to achieve and use its letters to form a reminder of what it is you want to remember to remember so that you can remember it. Something like R.E.A.L. (React Eagerly to All Learning), or T.R.Y. (Take Responsibility for Your actions), or H.O.S.T. (Help Others Succeed Today), etc. Get the idea?

Anyone really Can Retain what's Optimum in a New-York Minute. You just have to remember to remember the A.C.R.O.N.Y.M. for it!


4qtr2004 - Great Things I Didn't Say!

  • "He that is good at making excuses is seldom good at anything else." - Benjamin Franklin
  • "Thinking is the hardest work there is, which is the probable reason why so few engage in it." - Henry Ford
  • "We are wiser than we know." - Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • "Life is like a trumpet. If you don't put anything into it, you don't get anything out of it." - W.C. Handy
  • "The only place success comes before work is in the dictionary." - May Smith
  • "Not failure, but low aim, is crime." - James Russell Lowell