Chose your beans.

Author’s note: there is an old saying in Spanish that goes “En todos lados se cuecen habas” which in English means “You can boil beans anywhere” and it’s equivalent to sayings like “We all have our skeletons in the closet”.

“The neighbor’s grass is always greener” is a very common phrase that we hear and say very frequently.

We see how other people live their life, their family, their job, their title, their salary, their schedule, their boss, their benefits and how well they get along doing whatever it is they do and think to ourselves (sometimes out loud too) “How I wish I’d have that too”, and completely forget how well we are doing ourselves until somebody else lets us know how “our grass is greener than theirs”; and so the story goes over and over again.

It doesn’t matter what you do for a living, who you work for or where you live, it’s all the same.

If you work for a global organization you see the corporate bureaucracy while others see the benefits you get; if you work for a small company you focus on the limited resources while others do so on how you are practically part of the directors board; or if you run your own business you think of how hard it is to bring in revenue, while others celebrate your independence.

The reality is that, as the old saying goes: “You can boil beans anywhere”. It does not matter where you work, with who you do or how successful you are, there will always be a small detail, a person, a process or whatever, that will make you want to look at your neighbor’s grass.

So, what exactly does the people we so admire do? You know, those people who seem to have it all and are always smiling and never complaining. Are their lives as perfect as they seem?

A few months ago I read a phrase from Robin Sharma (Whom I’ve frequently cited here) that said that a trait in all great athletes, entrepreneurs, artists, employees, etc. is that “They make hard look really easy”.

And they do so because they work hard at it every day, and because they understand that there will always be some things they will have to do even though they don’t like doing. Yet they do so, because they know that is part of what will allow them to get to where they want to go.They understand that although they would rather avoid them, these are stepping stones to keep moving forward towards their goal. They don’t complain, they “chose their beans” and keep working hard.

The secret is not to search for the perfect life. The path with no rocks does not exist and the only people with no problems at all, are not here anymore.

We all can see our grass green, but we have to acknowledge that there will also be moments that although we’ll want to avoid, they are precisely those “boiling beans” we all have to deal with.

And who knows…they might even turn out to be like Jack’s magic beans!

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The comments, opinions and recommendations posted in this personal blog are my personal thoughts, and doesn't necesarily reflect those of my employer.