Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Is it time for a contrarian approach?

I spent last week in Florida. One fine day on the beach, I witnessed an interesting natural event. Some beach goers began to toss bread into the air and immediately 30 to 40 seagulls flew over to get some food. It was a frenzy and the birds seemed to be fighting each other over food. It reminded me of life as a doctor in NY.

Then I saw something amazing.

One bird--and only one bird--stopped participating in the melee and instead flew in the opposite direction toward the sea. Once there, beyond the cresting waves, this bird hovered and then made several dives and pulled out a fish. While his competitors were fighting over crumbs and hand-outs, this contrarian bird went solo and came out ahead.

It got me thinking. Do I fly with the other birds and fight like mad for some scraps. Or do I go the other way, beyond the cresting waves, so I can feed in the blue waters of no competition.

It was a nice day on the beach!