I am becoming convinced that as we age there are certain intangibles that we neglect, that we forgo, because of what we perceive as greater or more important. We pursue “things that can be measured” or “you’re crushing it” because we can either see improvement or growth via some mathematical calculation or metric, or even more because someone is telling us that were doing a great job and that we can be so much more.
Let’s remember the ability to measure is a truly amazing and beneficial concept and method for developing criteria and rubric (see? I justified that statement because it, itself, is measurable!). It’s not a bad thing, but just like overdosing in Halloween candy can make of feel lethargic and give us some short term regrets, setting aside things that cannot be easily measured can be detrimental to our health.
To neglect those intangibles,. Things like rest, things like reading, things like being at peace or just being still; being generous, with our time or with something else that can’t easily be measured…money can be easily measured so will give that. We can look at our tax return and see that we gave x amount of dollars last year, and feel really good about it.
But where does this leave us if we neglect our soul, if we neglect our mind? Where does this get us if we neglect relationships or neglect people that don’t usually get put in boxes and easily measured? What about serving and helping people where we won’t be told “you’re crushing it!” but actually puts us at the disadvantage because it puts us behind crushing something because it costs you your time, energy, and resources?
I’m not even convinced there’s a middle ground. Perhaps there is. But perhaps humanity is too big to be put into a box and quickly resolved away. Perhaps this is one of this lingering issues designed to keep our thoughts in tension. Those intangibles: they’re amazing at showing us life, however you measure it.