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What you can learn from a goldfish

You need a 7 Day BrainwashI once heard that a goldfish’s memory is something less than two seconds, which means that every time it goes around the bowl, it’s a new experience for it.

My first response was, poor goldfish! Then I reasoned that since it didn’t know what it was missing, it made no difference.

But then one day I saw it from a different perspective. I thought, lucky goldfish! What if we experienced things as new even though they have become familiar?

I don’t mean that losing your memory would be a good idea. Simply to remember that actually nothing is ever the same twice. You have never had today before, and can never have it again. That birdsong outside your window has never been sung in this context before.

It is that – the context – that perhaps we should tune into more. The constellation of places, people, events and our own thoughts, feelings and actions that make every single moment unique.

It’s not good for the marketing gurus, because if we all lived like it we’d want fewer new movies, fewer new anythings. We’d be so fascinated by this moment that there’d be no time for hankering after the latest toy because we’re bored.

There’s no danger any of us would do it long term. But just now and again, throughout your day, be a goldfish. Everything really is new.

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