A bird's eye view of a cafe with seated customers at a table and a staff member serving a lady at the counter.

What does having a life mean for you personally? 

I would not be surprised if you looked beyond the counter or the pass, to the very group of people you serve for the answer. What they are doing – enjoying a drink or devouring a meal, celebrating a joyous occasion, gathering with loved ones, engaging in idle conversation – seems to be living. Our ability to facilitate these things indicates our affinity towards the finer things in life. But in reality we simply lack the time and often the means to indulge in those things.

Added to this, we are also expected to be martyrs and give up any sense of attachment to the idea of a good life. But it is never truly quelled. This inner conflict just shows up in the many unhealthy habits and indulgences that Hospitality Industry professionals are known to embrace.

What we do not see is that having a life goes beyond having a good time. Having a career vs. having a life is far too simplistic and narrow a choice to ever bring us true fulfilment. And those indulgences will reveal their emptiness in a few years, or sometimes in the decades to come.

The better way to do it is to reflect on what having a life means to each of us. And take small steps everyday to build that vision. But first you have to see the truth about the choices in front of you. And have the courage to ask for more.

Having a life

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