My Mother is one of the deepest souls I know. She is beyond kind, empathetic, optimistic, and holds this light within her. A year ago, her and I were having a deep conversation about life, conformity, and how culturally people all live differently. There is something hugely to be said about this, and how we as individuals are the quickest to judge one another about what the "right" way of living really is- when really, I don't know if we even have it right. I believe it is so important to never live beyond your means. Simply have less, and do more. Making connections with others who live a completely opposite life than your own, was almost mind blowing. Being around those who did not feel the influence of materialism, vanity, envy, or the need to "have it all" was almost refreshing, and a lesson for myself. Living day by day, and making life simply about providing for those you love, and spending time with them while doing it. I feel like the world plays such an emphasis on always "needing more", without recognizing what it is that we already have, and being grateful for it. While my Mother and I continued talking, she paused, and grabbed this giant book of all her inspirations and pieces of writing. She flipped through the book to get to a short story that she insisted I read. Here I thought it was going to be another cliche inspirational quote, but instead it completely caught me off guard, and almost reshaped my thinking. Ever since I read that story, I've felt this shift in my life, and the change. I never thought a piece of writing would ever hold such symbolism to my life- in so many different ways. Take a moment, and have a read!
The Mexican fishermanAn American investment banker was at the pier of a small coastal Mexican village when a small boat with just one fisherman docked. Inside the small boat were several large yellow fin tuna. The American complimented the Mexican on the quality of his fish and asked how long it took to catch them.
The Mexican replied, "only a little while."
The American then asked why didn't he stay out longer and catch more fish?
The Mexican said he had enough to support his family's immediate needs.
The American then asked, "but what do you do with the rest of your time?"
The Mexican fisherman said, "I sleep late, fish a little, play with my children, take siesta with my wife, Maria, stroll into the village each evening where I sip wine and play guitar with my amigos, I have a full and busy life."
The American scoffed, "I am a Harvard MBA and could help you. You should spend more time fishing and with the proceeds, buy a bigger boat with the proceeds from the bigger boat you could buy several boats, eventually you would have a fleet of fishing boats. Instead of selling your catch to a middleman you would sell directly to the processor, eventually opening your own cannery. You would control the product, processing and distribution. You would need to leave this small coastal fishing village and move to Mexico City, then LA and eventually NYC where you will run your expanding enterprise."
The Mexican fisherman asked, "But, how long will this all take?"
To which the American replied, "15-20 years."
"But what then?"
The American laughed and said that's the best part. "When the time is right you would announce an IPO and sell your company stock to the public and become very rich, you would make millions."
"Millions.. Then what?"
The American said, "Then you would retire. Move to a small coastal fishing village where you would sleep late, fish a little, play with your kids, take siesta with your wife, stroll to the village in the evenings where you could sip wine and play your guitar with your amigos."