Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Lessons from the Continuum Concept - Lesson 1

In an earlier post I mentioned that I really enjoyed reading a couple of interviews with Jean Liedloff, author of the Continuum Concept. Well I finally read this 1975 classic and it has skyrocketed right into the top three on my "happiness literature" chart. The book has provided me with so much insight and inspiration that I have decided to do a small series on some of the lessons from this book. So without further ado, here we go with lesson #1:

The time we spend en route to a destination is equally valuable to the time we spend at the destination after we have arrived

Jean has a great story in the book about how she was helping the Yequana indians carry some of their load back to their village and how she felt that she was slowing them down. But suddenly she realized the indians didn't feel at all that she was slowing them down because they consider the time en route equally valuable to the time at the destination. Jean then makes the point of how much tension she felt released when she realized this.

When you think about it, this is brilliant. For some reason we in western society treat the time en route to somewhere as "inferior time". But that's nonsense, that's just our ego getting in the way, along with all the "we have to be productive" thinking we've picked up in our lives. I've tried incorporating this thinking into my life during the past few weeks and it does makes an incredible difference in living an even happier, more relaxed life. How about experimenting with this for a couple of weeks as well to see what it does to your life?