Brilliant, Fast or Cheap. Pick Two.
Inspired by something Target McConnells chairman Gary Brown once said. I got thinking. Like many things I see and hear, they stew with the hamster on the wheel in my brain because they relate not only to the context in which I found them, but can often translate across life and society as we know it.
Speaking at the annual An Post, Post Media conference in Croke Park, Gary was referring to clients wants and needs. Often having to tell them they have three things to choose from. Pick Two.
"You can have it Cheap & Fast, it won't be Brilliant., Have it Cheap & Brilliant it won't be Fast, or you can have it Fast & Brilliant but it's not gonna be Cheap".
As a former wedding photographer this rang many bells. Both from clients requests, to turn around times, and the ever present question of "Why are you so expensive?, someone on Gumtree said they would do it for €250".
So I thought about how this reflects on society on the whole. We are obsessed with speed. Getting from place to place or seeing results immediately.
Where in the past we were happy enough with dial up internet modems, now if your 100mb network is only running at 50mb we are agitated waiting on pages to load. Some of us restarting devices in fits of impatience.
Now look at how that carries over into our health and lifestyle. Living fast and frivolous, wanting to stay young and fit. How can we live a long healthy lifestyle, remain youthful and healthy but still be lazy, eating and drinking what is fast and convenient. You can't have it all!
I recently saw two documentaries back to back recorded on our Sky+, Dr. Ciara Kelly Presented BodyShopping on RTE followed by Micky Flanagan on Sky show Thinking Aloud.
First Dr. Kelly met with people going the fast and expensive route. Changing physical appearances to make themselves happier and appear healthier and youthful. Fast & Expensive doesn't mean brilliant.
These cosmetic procedures hadn't done anything to boost health. Merely whitewashing a wall full of cracks won't hold it together. Many of them not finding the inner peace or happiness they hoped to attain. The problems, deep seated within them. Always psychological, not physiological. The Gap between how they see themselves and how the feel the world expects them to be.
Next was Micky Flanagan on Thinking Aloud. In the episode he was looking at people ageing. He met with an 82 year old fitness instructor, she drank 3 litres of water a day, ate healthy and exercised daily. She didn't look 60. Cheap and Brilliant, but not Fast.
Over the show Micky talked to a number of people all on the same quest. To remain youthful. Some throwing money at it in the hope it will keep them looking young but being no more healthy, expense without the guarantee they will live any longer or be any happier. You can't have all three.
I suppose we all need to think about what it is we really want from life. Learning to slow down and get it the right way instead of some plastic pseudo-happy equivalent that seems to come straight away but doesn't last very long.