A View of the World
25 November 2008
  Transformed One Day at a Time
I recently watched the movie ‘Groundhog Day’ on DVD. The premise of the story is that Phil Connors, a TV weatherman, is sent to cover the story of Punxsutawney Phil, the famous Groundhog, to determine what the future holds. Connors ends up in an infinite loop, reliving February 2nd over and over again, until he discovers the truth about living and loving.

While watching this, I was especially struck by the way he took on the task of mastering skills – wonderfully illustrated in his learning to play the piano. He starts off as a rank beginner, paying $1,000 for a single lesson. He repeats this ‘single’ lesson every day, building on what he learned the day before. He struggles from simple scales to learning increasingly difficult pieces, guided by patient, but perplexed piano teacher. This regular routine culminates in his jazz piano improvisation on “Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini” by Rachmaninoff. His daily dedication to learning to play an instrument is filtered through his personality to become something that he offers up as a gift.

He didn’t know that specific performance was going to be the outcome of his lessons, but he did know that he wanted to change. With nothing but another day of sameness ahead of him, he forged ahead, transforming himself – and ultimately the people around him – one day at time.

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Insights from Randy Lawrence, aka randelaw

Location: Illinois, United States
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