I’ve re-written hundreds of fables — mostly Aesop fables, to give them new relevance. Namely, I re-wrote and illustrate these stories so that I can read them to my kids. They are a great vehicle for imparting timeless wisdom.
This article is a start of publishing them to a wider-audience. I hope you enjoy them.
The Wind and the Sun
The Sun and the Wind disputed which one of them was stronger.
The Sun believed her life giving warmth was stronger and could cause greater change in the world. The Wind believed its land altering might was stronger and could cause greater change in the world. They did not know how to prove who was truly stronger.
The Sun then saw a traveler and had an idea. As the traveler was coming down the road, the Sun said to the Wind, “See that traveler? We can use him to settle our dispute. The first one of us to make him take off his coat is stronger. You go first.” The Sun then hid behind a cloud.
The Wind thought for sure he would easily win this little competition. So, the Wind blew as hard as he could at the traveler without knocking the traveler down. But no matter how hard he blew, the traveler just held on to his jacket tighter and tighter.
Finally, the Wind gave up.
The Sun then came out and shined in all of her glory. The traveler quickly felt that it was too hot to have a coat on and took off his coat.
Moral: Kindness Solves more problems
I really like this fable for work too — I firmly believe that leaders bring the sunshine. That is, the leaders of a company have an obligation to bring joy to the environment. Work is stressful, life is stressful, so servant-leaders have an obligation to lean in on bringing the right environment to the office. This is true even if they are not feeling great or are particularly stresses — this is especially true in those instances. The research explored in “How Full is Your Bucket” and similar management books illustrate that a pushing for positive moments in work and life leads to more positive moments and productive work environments.
Similar to coaching our kids — it is easy to feed into negativity. It is easy for them to be allured by complaining and pointing out how things went wrong. Yet they will be happier and they will have more positive moments, if parents and teachers push the sunshine. If we model approaching the world with a strong joy filter — and appreciating and acknowledging when they are doing great things. It cannot be disingenuous, and it cannot be over the top, but it can and should be our default position.