While in my global strategic management class, I heard the following insightful quote:
“To attain knowledge, add things every day. To attain wisdom, subtract things every day.” -Lao Tzu
Our class was learning about the importance of considering eastern and western philosophies when expanding business globally. In East Asian strategy, simplification is a priority for business success. As a person who has been mostly influenced by western philosophy, I was inspired by this quote from the eastern part of the world. Outside of the business context, this quote has lifestyle implications about simplifying our days to become wise. I am constantly trying to add more to my life: more school, more certifications, more social events, and more experiences. Tzu’s quote reminds me that I can grow just as much, if not more, by simplifying my life, subtracting distractions and filtering out any excess things.
It has taken me many years to understand the importance of simplification, and it wasn’t until my experience studying abroad in Spain that I learned to simplify and prioritize the people and activities that bring me the most joy and positive energy. Now in graduate school, I am easily tempted to add things every day, but I am working to remind myself to stay focused and prioritize in order to achieve my long-term goals. Graduate school is a time to specialize and if I truly want to be an expert (a happy expert I might add), I need to continue to live simply. Regardless of our life stage, we can all remember the importance of simplification in order to maintain balance at work and at home.
Over the past couple months, I have enjoyed learning global perspectives from my international business classes. It has been fascinating to combine international philosophies in the field of business. I will continue to share my favorite insights with you!