Sunday, September 2, 2012

The Mean is a step toward simplicity

  1. Aristotle believed that, in every situation, proper behavior lies at the midway point, or the mean. 
  2. Example:  My doctor tells me to walk, walk, walk.  Forget about all other exercise, just walk.
  3. How far?  Where?  I'm stuck, and I procrastinate. 
  4. Guilt gets out its hammer and starts pounding on my brain, "You should be walking.   You should be walking.  You're not walking.  You're not walking."
  5. Aristotle would tell me not to fret, but instead look for the mean.  It's midway between walking a mile and not walking at all.  Half-mile is the mean.  
  6. If I go out my front door and walk ten steps today, eleven steps tomorrow, twelve the day after tomorrow, I'm working toward the mean.
  7. In two weeks, walking will be a habit, and I'll be closer to the mean.  
  8. A half mile a day adds up to 3-1/2 miles a week, and that's nothing to sneeze at. Not only that, but that Nasty Old Guilt will stop hammering away at me.
  9. Thanks, Aristotle for teaching me about this cool approach.

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