Mountain Sickness

Slow and steady wins the race. Aesop c. 550 B.C. Unless you’re into mountain climbing or skiing at high altitudes, you’ve probably never heard of mountain sickness. There are two types: one is rather mild and occurs at relatively low altitudes, while high altitude pulmonary edema can be very serious, even deadly. The basic cause of each is that the rate of ascent into higher altitudes outpaces the body’s ability to adjust. If a climber took a helicopter and landed halfway up a very high mountain to shorten the time to the top, he’d almost certainly contract the more serious …
Continue reading…

Running to stand still

Nothing recedes like progress. E. E. Cummings 1894 – 1962 Have you ever observed someone running on a treadmill? Usually, they’re putting forth a good deal of effort, yet they aren’t physically going anywhere; they continue to stay in the exact same place as when they started their workout. For me, this image provides a good analogy for the way so many people live their day-to-day lives: they’re constantly expending effort — possibly a great amount of effort — but they don’t make any forward progress. To some extent, stagnant progress is inevitable, because there will always be setbacks in life: the …
Continue reading…

What’s your back up plan?

If anything can go wrong, it will. Murphy’s Law I was working with a businessman some time ago as he prepared a six-month plan for his company. We went over it and it looked good. Then I asked him this question: “What’s your back-up plan?” His reply was, “What do you mean?” I reminded him about Murphy and his law: that if something can possibly go wrong, it will. I also noted that many people see Murphy as an optimist; they believe things will not only go wrong but will do so at the worst possible time and in the worst …
Continue reading…