Week in Review: Transience…

“Transience is the most general phenomenon of the cosmos. Change is the only changeless reality. Seasons, livelihoods, personal relationships – all of these will change. Our experiences in life are transient and relative. Only death is certain, completing the cycle of life that begins with birth. By meditating upon this truth, we recognize that we, too, are manifestations of transience. When we understand this teaching deeply, we become humble and sincere. We treasure each moment and endeavor to do our best. We feel less stress and become more accepting of the diverse phenomena of life. If something good happens we can feel the joy and be thankful. But we know that the conditions for the situation will not last forever, and we do not become attached to the feeling. We will simply consider every moment and every experience as a blessing.”

– Ilchi Lee (via Whiskey River)

A colleague had announced his resignation. It has taken a few weeks for the news to settle in – – and it has with mixed emotions. I’m happy for him…a fresh start with a young, rapidly growing enterprise. He has his skip back in his step – a gleam in his eye. A firm that has identified someone with an abundance of soft and hard skills. With cross functional expertise. With an ability to develop relationships. Not a glory hound, he delivered results.  Period.  And he didn’t care to blow smoke up the line. As one of my colleagues would say: “He’s all steak, no sizzle.” I didn’t ever see him raise his voice. Or get angry. I never saw him cave to political winds. He held his ground firmly and professionally and if the decision turned the other way, he’d “pick up his tools” and go back to work.

On one of his last days, he made his 1.5 hour commute (each way) just to have breakfast with me and to say thank you. I hired him into the firm and he said he “was grateful for the experience and for our relationship.” I sat across from him at the table…melancholy.

He’s picking up and moving south to re-fire his career. He’ll lose the nasty commute and finally get his close knit family into that house on the lake that he’s long been dreaming about.

In HR terms, he’ll be described as a “Regrettable Leave.” I’ll just call it a friend and a very good man lost. Lost to me and the firm.

Image Source


  1. Nice story for a Friday wrap up.. Love the Ilchi Lee quote and image..


  2. Barneysday says:

    Good post. It’s sad when someone who has kept their head down and done great work is lost by a company. Your description of a new spring in his step says it all. I’d love to write a book, “smart companies, foolish choices.


  3. The HR rhetoric doesn’t do this person justice, for a ‘regrettable leave’ is sometimes a ‘preventable’ one. More importantly, I’m sorry you had to say good bye to a friend, share your joy that he is moving on to a potentially more exciting chapter in his life and appreciate the context of Ilchi Lee’s quote and accompanying image.


  4. You always post such wonderfully profound quotes!! Great story!! Best wishes to your colleague!!


  5. gregblencoe says:

    I also love the quote. And it’s really tough to see great people leave. He sounds like a fantastic employee and a really good friend. “All steak, no sizzle” is a huge compliment.


  6. I believe so too. Everything that happens is a blessing. Your posts are truly inspiring.


  7. Reblogged this on MyDestiny2011 and commented:


  8. So wonderful that you honor your coworker and friend with missing him and grieving his loss to your company–but so wonderful that you celebrate with him the move to make his dreams for himself and his family come true! Thanks for sharing this here today!


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