12 Comments
Dec 20, 2023Liked by Kevin Maguire

Great essay, but I'm Brazilian, so I can't help but manifest my objection: "history’s most famous footballer"?? Come on...

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Don't make me 'soccersplain' you, Kevin!

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I feel you with "But today, for more and more of us, ascendancy is no longer the goal—it’s equilibrium." But I feel like this can only be the goal once you've gone all in and achieved something—and then chosen equilibrium as a contrasting (and temporary) move.

Putting it another way, I tend to see our path through life as a sinusoidal wave form. Like the ones on heartbeat monitors. The high peaks and low troughs are a sign we're alive. A flat line means we're dead. I've heard many people talk about "balance being a cover for mediocrity" and I think this is what they're getting at. I'm all for balance and equilibrium. I've experienced absent parents and I feel the same unhealthy drive in myself every day. Who would argue against more balance? But I'm also dubious of living a flat lined life and trying to aim at balance as an end state. Surely life's about riding the peaks and troughs, about tasting the highs of dedication and achievement along with the lows of sacrifice and guilt.

Don't get me wrong, I ain't trying to argue against what you're saying here Kevin, I'm not. I'm just saying I think ambition and equilibrium are a set of polarities we must manage ourselves between our whole lives, not solve once and for all. Flowing between the two poles is the goal, avoiding spending too much time at either pole.

My instinct tells me that happiness is the product of well chosen struggles and that we should choose the right mountains (and wear good shoes). I'd love to see you write about this.

Thanks Kevin keep up the great work you're doing

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Dec 14, 2023Liked by Kevin Maguire

Re the second article you shared, I highly recommend checking out Kate Mangino's other work, including her excellent book "Equal Partners."

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Dec 14, 2023Liked by Kevin Maguire

This is a great piece. And so on point for me right now - as a forty-something red Mancunian, with 3 kids, a Netflix account, and a growing feeling that ‘making it’ might not be what we are traditionally told it is.

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It's so refreshing to read this written by a Dad: "Becoming a father means taking on a new role—something that means more than your LinkedIn profile, or how many trophies you’ve won." It gives me hope that women AND men can make the world of work more humane and family-friendly.

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