Culture’s Best

What can one learn from the World Cup? Head-butting is bad; passing is good; defense is even better; and, staying calm and serene when approaching the ball in penalty kicks is best. However, these lessons aren’t the ones we, or at least most of us, can easily apply to our daily lives. Is there something more that demonstrates why the Italians are so good and be applicable to the rest of us?

The answer appears to be culture. According to an article in the U.K.’s The Telegraph, the Italians’ devotion to good food, slower lifestyle, and more time for leisure all add up to a better way of living and doing better in life.

In comparison to the Telegraph’s home based audience, Italian men and women stay healthier longer — ten years for men and fourteen years for the women. The Italian government spends significantly more money on the quality of school lunches. Food is also the top expenditure in an Italian household.

Meals are an occasion. As opposed to many of us that eat, literally, on the run or in a few bites at our desks, Italians are more likely to go home for lunch and then take a nap. Already, don’t you get the sense you, too, would improve your ball passes with this approach to daily life? Food is not the only sacred element.

The average work week in the UK is 43.6 hours. In Italy it is 38.5. Don’t you think you, too, would play better defense with this approach to the work week?

For one of the Telegraph’s stats I have no idea how they found it, but it’s in the Telegraph so let’s believe it: More than 25% of the journeys in Italy are made by walking, as opposed to only 12% in England. You see the connection. A leisurely stroll, an even pace, an unhurried approach. Now, don’t you think your PKs would improve?

Anyone who enjoys making an occasion of a meal, putting their working life in perspective, and taking a stroll to see and hear the world around us is someone who is going to be in a festival audience time and time again. In other words, success can come from simply enjoying life and each other.

- Bill Reichblum

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