Why You Can’t Solve Your Biggest Problems or Seize Your Greatest Opportunities


A Lesson from a Smart Russian Smuggler

A man named David Hunt tells a story I want to share with you today.

It’s a story that reveals the problem we all have with overcoming our problems or seizing the opportunities in our lives.

Listen to Hunt’s story and then I’ll explain what I mean…

Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev used to tell of a time when there was a wave of petty theft in the Soviet Union. To curtail this the authorities put up guards around the factories.

“At one timberworks in Leningrad, the guard knew the workers in the factory very well. The first evening, out came Pyotr Petrovich with a wheelbarrow and, on the wheelbarrow, a great bulky sack with a suspicious-looking object inside.

“‘All right, Petrovich,’ said the guard, ‘what have you got there?’

“‘Oh, just sawdust and shavings,’ Petrovich replied. ‘Come on,’ the guard said, ‘I wasn’t born yesterday. Tip it out.’ 

And out came nothing but sawdust and shavings.

“So he was allowed to put it all back again and go home. When the same thing happened every night of the week the guard became frustrated. Finally, his curiosity overcame his frustration.

“‘Petrovich,’ he said, ‘I know you. Tell me what you’re smuggling out of here, and I’ll let you go.’

“‘Wheelbarrows, my friend,’ said Petrovich, ‘wheelbarrows.'” 

Why You Can’t Solve Your Biggest Problems or Seize Your Greatest Opportunities

The reason that you can’t find solutions to your biggest problems and the reason you’re missing the greatest opportunities in your life is NOT because no solution exists or no opportunities are there.

It’s simply because you’re focused on the wrong things.

You’re staring at the sawdust while the wheelbarrows rolls on by!

If you don’t do something about this, then the wheelbarrows will keep getting through and your solutions and opportunities will continue to elude you.

I think the first step to eliminating this problem is by changing your focus.

How to Change Your Focus

  1. Determine what you are focused on now.List the things that you currently are focused on in your attempt  to overcome your problems and search for opportunities.
  2. Take each of those areas that you are focused on and determine one of two things:A) Is there something you’re overlooking?
    B) Is there somewhere else you should be looking?

Once the guard did this, he realized what he’d been looking for was right in front of him the whole time!

The same thing can happen for you.

Change your focus and you’ll see new solutions and new opportunities!

If you want to learn more about how to fix this problem, then I think you’ll like a post I just wrote on my other site BayBusinessHelp.com.

It’s called…

What a Roving Band of Thieves Can Teach You About Getting Unstuck and Getting More Done

In this post, you’ll learn:

  • The thieves that are robbing you each day
  • The good news and bad news about them
  • What we’re really up against
  • Why time management isn’t your real problem
  • Why some people accomplish more than you do
  • 4 different kinds of effort and the amazing difference in their results

You can read this post here… 

What a Roving Band of Thieves Can Teach You About Getting Unstuck and Getting More Done

Photo by  Okko Pyykkö


Scott Aughtmon
I’m author of the book 51 Content Marketing Hacks. I am also a regular contributor to ContentMarketingInstitute.com and I am the person behind the popular infographic 21 Types of Content We Crave.

I’m a business strategist, consultant, content creation specialist, and speaker. I’ve been studying effective marketing and business methods (both online and offline) since 1999.

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