Getting out of the swamp

Once upon a time there was a guy. A greedy guy. An excellent professional but greedy guy. Hardworking person, excellent professional… but greedy guy. Well you get the point.

Being all the above, as you might have imagined, led to a great deal of work. Hours of work on a daily basis. Hours of interesting work though. Not errands or other tasks that lead to self-destructive feelings. Just tones of interesting work 🙂

After following his work-acholic schedule for several months, one Sunday, completely out of the blue, he decided to give himself a break. He worked until 04.00, as usual, slept for about five hours and, when he woke up, got dressed, got inside his car, and left.

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It was about 12.00 when he reached a nearby forest. He parked his car and entered. Wandered for a while and found himself standing on a glade. He sat down and ate a big sandwich he had prepared and drank a bottle of milk. Being not hungry any more, he continued his walk to the woods. He was now far away of his car but he didn’t seem to care. He kept walking.

It was about 17.00 when he reached a strange place. There were trees but also a lot of water. And mud. A swamp. He had heard that swamps can be very dangerous places. This swamp though, was strangely attractive. He wanted to enter. Explore it. A couple of movies came to his mind and he had a plot made up for himself at no time.

Without further thought he entered the swamp and started walking, to reach the other side. He was trying to have always a tree to grab in case he started sinking. He was doing well when the trees ended and only mud was ahead. He now had to make a decision. Either continue and have faith, or go back.

He then realized that the biggest part of his life was exactly like this walk in the swamp. Always trying to follow the safest path. No challenges. No risk. He felt predictable. Common. Annoyingly common. So he went ahead.

After a couple of steps the expected happened. He started sinking into the swamp. At first he impulsively tried to stay on surface but soon he realized he was only making things worse. So he relaxed and waited. After a couple of minutes he understood that by the moment he had stopped fighting he had not sank at all. Slowly he started to practically swim to reach a nearby floating piece of wood. A few moments later he had grabbed the wood and confidently was approaching solid ground.

It was almost 20.00 and the hardworking person, excellent professional… but greedy guy was sitting to the ground of a dark swamp, covered with mud and dirt, speculating on his experience. Suddenly, he had a revelation. He stood up and left.

Next day, our friend woke up, as usual, at about 06.00. Washed his face, dressed up and left for work. He stopped, as usual, to buy coffee and after that went to the company. There, he went straight to the manager and handed over his resignation. The manager, stumped, asked him what had provoked a decision like this.

“I decided to join the company as a partner” he said and smiled. I’ll come back next week to present my ideas to the boss. “You got to be kidding” said the manager. “For ten years you worked as an employee. I don’t see how you can afford becoming a partner. But even if you can. Why now?”. “I do have the money” said the so far hardworking person, excellent professional… but greedy guy. “As for your timing question… something happened yesterday, that made my day…