top of page

Three bricklayers. Building a cathedral story


Three bricklayers. Building a cathedral story - Empowerment Coaching Krakow Blog-1

The story of the three bricklayers is a multidimensional parable with its source in authentic history. After the great fire that razed London to the ground in 1666, the world's most famous architect, Christopher Wren, was tasked with rebuilding St. Paul Cathedral.


One day in 1671 Christopher Wren watched three bricklayers on a scaffold:


  • one crouched,

  • the other half-standing,

  • and the third standing upright.


Everyone worked very hard and fast.


Christopher Wren asked every bricklayer one question: "What are you doing?"


The first bricklayer replied, "I am a bricklayer. I work hard laying bricks to feed my family. "


The second bricklayer replied, “I am a builder. I'm building a wall. "


But the third bricklayer, the most productive of the three, when asked, "What are you doing?" replied with a twinkle in his eye, "I am a cathedral builder. I am building a great cathedral to the Almighty. "


 


What does the story of the three bricklayers teach us?

There are many variations of this story available online. Still, each version is about three people working on the same wall, doing the same job, but looking at it from a completely different perspective.


There are many valuable analogies to be drawn from this story, both in our private lives and at work. Among them, for example, the following three:


Start with a vision of the end

Before starting any project, decide for yourself what you will achieve. What should the end result look like? How will you know that you have reached your intended goal? What will be the source of YOUR satisfaction? No matter what others say.


Realize the power of your attitude

The right attitude and pride in what you do will be visible in your work and motivation. Making an informed choice and taking responsibility gives you strength and a sense of agency.


First, try to understand or explain the "Big Picture"

Employees who are properly connected with the company's values ​​and goals are more engaged, more productive, calmer, and more relaxed. You can even say they are proud of their work and do not need to be motivated.


 


Where can the story of building a cathedral lead us?

This story also leads us to a fundamental question and SEARCHING FOR MEANING IN LIFE.

t was described beautifully and dramatically in the book "Man's Search of Meaning" by Viktor Frankl - an Austrian psychiatrist and psychotherapist who survived Auschwitz. This book is a heart-and-mind-moving story that presents human behavior devoid of empathy, which the writer observed and experienced in the reality of the camp.


A concentration camp could break a man, and turn a victim into a torturer. Disappointments and unimaginable suffering were the order of the day there. Every day it was about life or death. In the literal sense.


However, according to Dr. Frankl, evil and suffering cannot ultimately destroy a person, in a metaphysical sense. He noticed that those who had a purpose or a reason for living beyond themselves usually survived. While those who were primarily self-centered - no. The survivors managed to find meaning even in such a dramatic situation. And finding meaning has been to care for and help others through this terrible experience.


Do you know your purpose?

I encourage you to read this book. Perhaps it will also move you and will naturally make you remember the question about the meaning of your life. Maybe, as a result of reading it, you will completely change the priorities that guide you in your everyday life. And you will be in an excellent position to define your true life purpose.


Do you know your personal values?

Are you aware of what is important to you in life? For sure? How often do you ask yourself this question? How clear and insightful your answer is?


On our portal, there is a free PDF ebook available titled "How to Discover Your Life Values?"


This free guidebook contains the process that will guide you step by step through the discovery of your personal values. As a result, you will receive the list of your top 10 personal values arranged in order of importance.


The advantage of the process is simplicity. All you need is silence, a pen, and a few sheets of paper. In addition to specific instructions, the descriptions presented in this free guidebook also include examples, although there will not be too many of them. We don't want to suggest answers to you and affect your choices. These are to be YOUR personal values.


Another advantage of the process included in this free guidebook is that in addition to being aware of what is fundamentally important to you, you can also discover other very valuable "aha!"




The story of three bricklayers-Empowerment Coaching Krakow Blog-2


See also other coaching stories and parables:


2,138 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All
Post: Blog2_Post
bottom of page