Einstein is quoted as saying “Everything should be made as simple as possible, but no simpler.”
As I sit here in Hoi An, a UNESCO World Heritage Centre, looking out over the rice paddies, listening to the multitude of frogs calling across the night, it drives home how simpler doesn’t necessarily mean simple. It’s easy to look at the businesses here and define a way to make them simpler, yet simple already works.
A community of locals who don’t exploit the market like in Ho Chi Minh, but are driven to be part of a community. Simple is quality of life, simpler is defining boundaries. Not always the best outcome, and definitely not one that suits Hoi An.
It reminds me of Waiheke; an island 30 minutes from Auckland, a place where simpler doesn’t really have a home with the locals, who prefer the simple life. One where the community comes together to move things forward, yet is mindful of the community.
Yesterday, I had my eyes lasered by the CT Eye Hospital in Saigon (as it’s known by the locals, Ho Chi Minh City to the rest of you). I’m wearing motorbike goggles waiting for sleep to beckon, ensuring my eyes are protected from the nighttime urge to rub my eyes.
Watching television at this time of night makes me recall how simple life could be, a life without the rat race, where friends and family come together for a common purpose; one where we love being together and creating experiences for fellow human beings that excite and enthrall them.
Imagine a common vision; one where we meet people who empower us to be better, where we experience change together. Last night I had dinner with my doctor Tuan. Tuan is not a Saigon native, but grew up on a farm not wanting to be a farmer, and his parents enabled that. He works hard for little money, crazy for such a personable and skilled doctor. But it’s easy to see the love he has for his job, where he gets to make a difference.
And that’s the key, doing something that makes a difference. I have made connections and relationships already with a multitude of people. People from all walks of life, people who are not interested in riches and gaudy trinkets, but want to meet people and help them.
So for me, the future is one where I connect and advise where things can be simple, where goals can be achieved without pushing boundaries of comfort or funding.
As an innovator, I’m allowed to create. I’d suggest within boundaries, taking advice where I can, and pushing the boundaries where the risk reward ratio is achieveable.
And that’s the key to growing, and finding the best things that are simple for you. Collaboration, communication and consideration. The 3 Cs that might, just might make you a better person.
Goodnight from me and the 3,000 frog chorus outside. Oh and the dry; yes I’m on eyedrops for six months – dry eyes are my enemy, be emotional and let your eyes water; even tear at times. You’ll be a better person for it (even if the goggles are irritating…).