Charles R. Swindoll has collected stories and quotes in his book The Tale of the Tardy Oxcart. He talks about a story from Robert Coleman’s book Written in Blood involving a young girl who had a disease and needed a transfusion of some of her brother’s blood to overcome it. The doctor explained the need to the young boy and asked "Would you be willing to give your blood to your sister?" The boy hesitated a minute and said: "Yes, I’ll do it." The process was started and after awhile the doctor was with the boy when he asked "When do I die?" The doctor then understood that the boy had thought he would die when he agreed to give blood to save his sister.
He repeats an old joke about the man an airport who stopped a passerby carrying two suitcases to ask if had the correct time as he was trying to catch a flight to London. The man put the suitcases down, looked at his watch and said: "It is exactly, 5:09. The temperature is 73 degrees. It will rain tonight and the barometer is falling. In London, where you are going it is 38 degrees Celsius, the weather is clear and it is 17:09 hours." The man asked if his watch told him all of that, to which the other replied, "Of course, and much more." The man asked about buying the watch and they began negotiations and agreed on a price. He was elated, paid him and put the watch on his wrist. As he was leaving to catch his flight, the seller picked up the two suitcases and said "Wait. Don’t forget the batteries."
Charles Jehlinger, a former director of the American Academy of Dramatic Arts, used to tell actors: "Mean more than you say."
Swindoll also says that in 1937 the great Golden Gate Bridge was completed at a cost of $77 Million. It was built in two stages. In the first stage some twenty three bridge workmen fell to their death. At that point $100,000 was spent a netting. It was the largest net ever built and it was hung below the bridge for protection. Ten men were saved in the second stage of construction by the net and the work went 25% faster. One wonders about the role of mental attitude in the reduction of falls and increase of speed of work knowing there was a protective net.