If you read this introduction already, just scroll down and start reading about Gluttony, otherwise it is recommended that you read the introduction bellow.
Let’s analyze how these common vices can affect your business and your overall income. You may think that the concept of deadly sins is a religious one and do not apply to you, but you may call them negative tendencies if you want. The fact is that you can find them in more or less intensity within most people.
You may not realize that one of these tendencies may be affecting you until I show you the details. If you realize that there is a problem, I will also give you the solution so you can fix it. I will explain and compare now the most common negative tendencies among people with their corresponding opposite virtues.
Before we start, I need to tell you something . . .
I. Most sins arise from: FEAR.
II. Most virtues arise from: LOVE.
III. Sins, vices and negative tendencies demonstrate weakness, while virtues demonstrate strength.
In my opinion the biggest virtue of all is COURAGE/CONFIDENCE, because it is the direct fruit of love, which dissipates fear and sow all other virtues in human’s hearts.
This is a series of articles about this subject. The whole series contain the following articles . . .
– Gluttony –
This negative tendency is related to the desire to consume more than what we need. It doesn’t have to do with food only, but also with many other aspects and areas of life.
When you mention the word gluttony, people often think about eating a lot. This doesn’t necessary has to be the case. If someone wants too much of anything, if someone wishes excess, that’s gluttony.
This sin is destructive because excess is always destructive. Almost always when people seek excess in an area of life, they will neglect other important aspects that are also important and necessary.
I will give you a few examples. Let’s say that some people wish to be really, really wealthy. They love money, businesses and finances. Their dream is to be billionaires. All they do is to think about how to get more money.
They have no friends or don’t care about them. These people do not relax. They do not have fun. Making money is their definition of having fun. They do not do any exercise. They barely eat or sleep. Business/making money is their obsession. It is their everything. That’s gluttony.
Now, let me make myself clear. Sometimes, people need to concentrate for a few years on an area, so they can accomplish a goal or objective. A start up may require their owners to focus on it and forget about everything else for a few years. Sometimes you have to concentrate on what you are doing for a while until it starts producing results.
The example above refers to people that want excess. They want more than they need. Not only that, they do only one thing, neglecting other important areas of life. The point is that life, like nature, is not only about one thing, but many.
Some of these obsessed people do get what they want. The problem is that when you have more than you can consume, the excess is often good only to share it or give it away. That’s what many extremely wealthy people end up doing, sharing their wealth like Rockefeller did.
You may ask how is gluttony distinguishable from greed? The glutton may share some of their money from time to time. They are not concerned with running out of cash. That’s why many gluttons actually become very rich. The point is that they want more than they need.
Greedy people do not like to share anything. They want to get their “fair share” or a bit more. The greedy individuals do not really get obsessed with getting a whole bunch of something, but with not losing what they already have. Many greedy individuals are also gluttons though. That’s why you see that they want more and more and they suffer if they have to share a cent.
Let’s get back to gluttony. This sin doesn’t only apply to money nor food but to everything else. Some people simply work too much and they don’t do it out of necessity, but choice. Work is their drug and they dissipate many of their other problems working.
They have three jobs and they are thinking about a fourth one. Again their house is paid off like their cars, their businesses are ok, everything is ok. They seem to have no financial problem. They don’t fear to lose anything. They just want more. “The sky is the limit.” These people are workaholic. They do nothing else but work.
The same happens with study, work and any other area of life. When your life spins around one area only or a few ones, but nothing else, you may be getting into gluttony ground. If all you do is to think about money, work on your businesses, read about investments, try to acquire more wealth, etc, etc; you are off balance. If you spend all your waking life only thinking about money, you are off balance.
Some people simply like businesses for the sake of it. I like businesses for three different reasons. Number one I like to add value to other people’s lives. Number two business is a hobby for me. Number three I like to make money. I like money and wealth.
For me money is a tool, not the goal. I compare money, business and life with a car, traveling and gasoline. Life is traveling, business is the car, money is the gasoline. Money is the tool that help me use another tool (business) that help me achieve the goal. The goal is to enjoy life. I can’t achieve the goal if I am obsessed with the tools.
Some people need tools: money, wealth, etc. They are very poor, so they start up confused. They get obsessed. They get many, many tools, but they don’t achieve the goal, and at the end they realize that they have far more tools than they need so they give them away.
To be obsessed is not the same as to be passionate. It is as the saying goes: “Greatness requires sacrifice.” You must focus on the goal though. If you want money, what do you want it for? Your answer to that question is your goal.
Now, remember that what truly matters is not the goal either, but the purpose. You can learn more about this on my other series titled: “The 7 secret keys to wealth.” Many people after reaching their goal, still feel empty. That’s why they constantly set new goals. They do not realize that there is a common component behind most of the goals they set. To understand this better read my other series mentioned above.
Gluttony is the sin that opposes moderation or temperance. In other words balance. The problem with these sins or negative tendencies is that people who practice them often can’t see it nor perceive it, so they think they are ok. Once they receive the result of their attitudes, they get mad and frustrated, because they can’t understand the reason, they can’t see it!
A good way to help people see, is to describe each of these tendencies little by little, so they can understand where they are missing the point. Some of these tendencies are very subtle. For example, in the case of gluttony, some people may want to have multiple streams of income, which is good, but many people fail on this project for the following reason . . .
They want to have too many streams of income and they don’t give the necessary time nor effort required to make any source of income really profitable. They jump from one idea to the next for months or years without settling down on anything specifically.
They do not maintain a balance between starting a business and keeping it. They start one and another and another, but most of their time and effort is focused on starting businesses not keeping them profitable.
Some people have just one business, but they are unsuccessful because they focus too much time and effort in one area of the business only, neglecting other important areas. They may spend most of the available resources on the product development section, neglecting some other areas like advertisement and customer support.
You may have only one business. Your life may be pretty much balanced, but you may still find some troubles because of this. On this example you may fall victim of gluttony and not notice it. If you are dedicating excessive time and efforts to an area and leaving other important aspects to run crazy, the disorder may increase fast within the business.
It is as this analogy goes: Most people’s lives are made of twenty rooms. Most people spend most of their time in one or a few rooms. They keep that room clean and pretty. In fact sometimes it shines more than necessary, but don’t visit the other rooms, because you won’t like what you will see.
That’s the main idea behind gluttony. Keep most rooms relatively clean. Do not try to make one room perfect while leaving all others getting dust. The problem with the glutton is that he/she often feels something is really wrong. They may think that there is only one thing they want in life, but life is not about one thing only, it is about many things.
So, when they get what they want (excess) it will not satisfy them, because they will still be striving to succeed in many other aspects of life that they lack so much. Even if they could get excess in every area of life, it would still be sad and frustrating, because excess is never good and always destructive.
The secret is to keep a balance in everything you do. Moderation is the virtue that gluttony opposes. If you maintain a moderate attitude in everything you do, you will keep this negative tendency away. When you start to get excessive and obsessive, you start to move into gluttony ground.
When you realize that you want more than you need, it is good to understand that you won’t need that much. Sometimes it is hard to control this tendency, but not impossible. Some people know they are gluttons, but they can’t quit it. They know that they want too much, that they want more than they will be able to consume and they maintain that attitude.
The problem with this sin is that it is subtle. It turns something good into something bad easily. For example, adding value to other people’s lives is good. You can do this through your job, business, work, creativity, services, innovation, productivity, etc.
On the other hand, if you add too much value to others and neglect your own life, you may get sick or too tired. This may prevent you from adding all the value you could have added in the long run, if you would have kept it balanced since the beginning.
Generosity is a good thing. If you are too generous and you give away everything you may end up without anything. You may say: “Am I not supposed to reap what I sow? Why is it that I have nothing? Why if I help everybody it seems that nobody is interested in helping me?”
Yes “you reap what you sow” and “what is around comes around.” You may have many blessings that greedy people do not have. Many individuals may come to you and help you, but you don’t realize that you keep giving everything away to others. In my opinion, it is an irresponsible act to give away to others what you need to cover your own necessities.
Some people think that by being too generous they will be blessed and they will become rich. Excessive generosity can act against you the same way that greed does. Evil people will come to you and will try to take advantage of you, if you don’t stop them, they will ruin you.
Would you give the things you and your family need to friends and strangers? If your friend needs some chairs and you can not afford to purchase more chairs would you give your friend your chairs even if you have to sit on the floor for weeks?
If you want to turn something good into something bad all you need is an excess of it. Take your favorite song and listen to it 7,000 times continually and repetitively without stopping. It will make you mad. You will hate it forever. Repetition is torture. Excess is destructive. LESS IS MORE!
That’s the opposite of “the sky is the limit” and “more is better.” We live in an era of consumerism. Our society is guilty of this sin. More is produced than what is needed and a lot ends up in the waste facility growing dust and pollution.
Our society believes that lack of something is bad, but excess is good. What’s the point in that. Excess is only good to share what you don’t need with others who have nothing. We need abundance, but not excess. You can be prosperous and wealthy without having excessive wealth. Remember that money is only a tool, not the end on itself.
I like money and riches. I don’t preach against it. Do not get me wrong here. The desire to have too much though can make you poor forever. Why? Because you will never feel that you have enough to fit your definition of too much. You may often move the line up a few levels. When was the last time that you reached the horizon? You can’t do it, because once you get there, you discover that there is a new horizon.
The wish for excess is like mirages in your sight. You will never feel that you have enough. You may not realize that reaching the goal is not what truly matters, but achieving the purpose. Goal and purpose are not the same thing. For example eating can be pleasurable, but the real purpose is to keep you alive.
The food may be tasty. It can make you happy, but if you eat too much you can get sick. Work is a blessing, but if you work too much, you may hate it. Business is good and making money is great, just keep the excess under control. Moderation is the keyword.
I will have to finish this article now, otherwise I will type excessively. I typed too much already.
If you read the other articles on this series, you will realize that the common characteristic behind this negative tendencies is: selfishness. If you are absolved with yourself, you will show one or more of these tendencies on your daily actions. The solution is to live a less selfish lifestyle. By changing your attitude, you may change the outcome of your actions. You may be amazed at the results and you will feel happier and successful.