Is a tortoise or hare more successful?
Is a tortoise or hare more successful?
One of the main reasons I stepped out of the world of healthcare and illness, into the world of wellness and preventative care is knowing there is an alternative to the current approach of well-being.
A consistent thread and pattern of illness has been working with people who have been driven by success.
It’s usually only when illness arrives and a person is forced to slow down that they start to consider their lifestyle.
The drive for what is deemed as successful in Western countries often pushes people to ridiculous levels of stress.
Burnout in Western countries is increasingly prevalent.
It is easy to go to the doctor and get medication for anxiety, depression and various symptoms.
This may be needed to initially regulate the body, but it is just as important and necessary to look at the big picture.
Symptoms of the body are exactly that.
They are red-flags and clear sign posts of warning that the human body gives and signals; telling you that you are out of balance.
If we choose to simply medicate and numb the short term symptoms, the long term outcome is likely to be unfavorable.
Asian well-being and culture has a different approach.
Culturally longevity is valued.
A long healthy life is valued.
For this reason, people understand the short term requirements in order to achieve long term success, which is a long life.
The tortoise and the hare.
Western culture is very much the hare.
Increased pace of life. Accumulation of items as a display of wealth.
Money is important and is definitely something everyone needs to live a comfortable life but if the desire for more items becomes the driving force and the big picture is lost there is no value in the pursuit.
Doing genealogy and family history research I came to the conclusion there is 1 fundamental similarity in all the stories.
Peoples lives may have had different stories.
Things may have played out differently but they ALL ended with a ZERO BALANCE on their estate files.
We don’t take any of the things with us, and within 1-2 generations any legacy in the form of physical assets is gone.
A house may be left, but within 1-2 generations the information disappears unless a historian or genealogist resurfaces the stories of the past.
If the pursuit of success ends up destroying your own health and the relationships around you, damaging families, there is no value in the success.
Much of my opinion is also based on hospice work and speaking to people at the end stages of life.
Only then do many assess what is really important.
People leave with memories.
They remember things like the smell of fresh cut grass, rain on a hot day, flowers, music and laughter.
Many people choose to return to childhood stories, because childhood involved playing and pure innocent fun.
If we get so caught up the race of the hare that we lose sight of the big picture, we run the risk of shortening our own lifespan.
Potentially ending life with great suffering.
This is the reason why I now focus on helping people recover from and hopefully to prevent burnout and traumatic stress.
In most cases people don’t recognise their own redflags until the physical damage on their own bodies has been caused.
- Working hard is important.
- Investing yourself into your work is important.
- Accomplishment is important.
- Relationships and communities are important.
However, without primarily investing in yourself first, and putting your own oxygen mask on first, it is not possible to be there in the long term for any of the other things.
There is no value in consuming yourself, in order to consume impermanent items around you.
This is also why I now make an effort to offer workplace training.
Toxic work environments directly impact people and communities.
There is no value in profit motivation without primarily investing in the well-being of your own workers at the same time.
The legacy of a business is not the share value, but the treatment of your own workers.
Business and work are important but turning cold, losing your own humanity and own sincerity in the process, is a high price to pay at the end of your life. That is the long-term risk we run.
Dying with a positive bank balance, damaged body and destroyed relationships is not something I aspire to as a beacon of success.
Knowing the Asian approach to well-being and doing by best to live accordingly, I would much rather walk the talk and be the tortoise.