Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Part 1: Lean Living Practices

Building the Background

I am a ‘Lean Living’ practitioner. I have been practicing Lean Living since October 2002. And, it was in early 2004 when I fell in love with a company (Business Organization) that has always been big on Sustainability. That company is Siemens. Lean Living is a Philosophy and a ‘Way of Life’. Lean Living, as a practice, tries to influence and enhance three factors in human life. Those factors are Simplicity, Sustainability and Satisfaction (3S). Lean Living is based on three personal attributes of the Practitioner: Responsible, Innovative and Excellence, in that exact order. Sounds familiar?

A Lean Living Practitioner acts with a great sense of Responsibility toward this planet, its environment, its living beings, mankind and the society (that includes the Practitioner and the Practitioner’s family and relatives) at large. The Practitioner never tries to chase innovation (continuous improvement) without that sense of responsibility. Acting responsibly, while innovating, produces excellent results that matter the most to human life. Lean Living is a set of 'configurable'  and 'context sensitive philosophy driven' Life-Practices that guide a human being in consciously living a life that is full of things and events that make the most real sense in a human-life. It helps one steer clear of things and events that, apparently do, but do not actually make real sense in one’s life. So when one looks back, while resting and slowing down in the long journey called life, the feeling that flashes in the human mind is that of absolute satisfaction and not resentment.

Here is a little background of Lean Living. This Lean Living Practitioner resides in India. So, it is safe to assume that, many of this Practitioner’s observations are influenced by the Indian context. However, that does not mean the aspects discussed in this article are isolated and related exclusively to the Indian context. Human-life is still relatively simpler in rural and non-urban areas compared to that of Urban Areas and Cities. So, Lean Living practices are more relevant in the context of cities. Human life has become more mechanical and stressful. Keen focus on material acquisition has become the order the day and the chase is on! It may just look like a simple pursuit of happiness. But, indeed, it is NOT!

It happens in case of many human beings. Till very late in life, they keep themselves busy in chasing material acquisitions. And, that continues to prevail as their sole goal in life. At a very later stage in life, tired and dissatisfied, they try to reflect back. And, when they look back, they discover that they did not really live a life. It was more a chase combined with a passion for material acquisition. Unfortunately, many still believe, material acquisition is a symbol of social advancement. However, it is just the opposite, as per the theorists of that subject (Social Advancement).  They (authorities | theorists) believe, in a really advanced society, we get to see substantially lesser focus on material acquisitions. And, we do get to see a great focus on social welfare and justice, sense of responsibility towards people and the planet, ‘cognitive, intellectual and spiritual’ acquisition and true enrichment of human life.

Life is not really about working and making money. It’s not about buying houses, vehicles and furniture. Life is not about accumulating wealth. However, all these are, very much, parts and parcels of life. However, distinction is definitely required to be made between a part and the whole. If only a part is understood and perceived as the whole, the real, and probably the bigger and more important, other part gets neglected and life loses its liveliness. It will not really be far from the truth if we say that everyone tries to chase happiness and satisfaction in life. Human beings are, presumably, the most sophisticated creature on this planet. However, we do the most of damage to it and very little good to it. No other living being does that, apparently. And, we tend to go away from basics. That’s where the problem starts. Life is good till it is simple. Life is good till we are in a position to enjoy every little good thing around us. It is good till we are in a position to pay attention to good things in our lives, society around us, our family and relatives, nature, music, relationships etc. We must be able to get time and energy to pause, stand and stair! Do you remember that poem “Leisure” by William Henry Davies? It’s really worth taking a look at today. NEXT >>

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Part 1: Lean Living Practices by Debi Prasad Mahapatra is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

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