Like sand sliding through your fingers …

Time. Life. Health. Love. Friendship. Fortune. These are extreme values for our existence on Earth. But none of these are permanent as, many times, when we think we have them, they are gone. Why?

Because when we have them … we take them all for granted!

Because we are bad managers of what is given to us.

Because we do not want to accept that equilibrium depends on nothing remaining static.

Because we were given the capacity to choose, rationally and emotionally and, more often than not, we do not use both those capacities in an adequate, integrated manner.

Because we want to bend reality to suit our own desires, instead of adjusting our wishes to reality in the best possible way.

Because we are, after all, just human and, consequently, absolutely not perfect.

Be rational

We were given the capacity to think, to reason, to decide.

So let’s be rational, as that is what distinguishes man from other animals.

Is it an asset that we use as we should? Most of us definitely do not use it properly. We do not enjoy, as best we can, the time that we have.

And what do we know about time?

Once I heard a well-known Portuguese humorist say: “We have a very short period of validity.” He was so right!

Are we aware of this important, unavoidable, inexorable fact in due time? No, not most of the time; usually only later in life when a great amount of our time has already been used and abused, as when we are younger it seems that the time we have is never-ending.

Do we know when life will end? This is the mystery of life, what makes it interesting. Like a permanent surprise party. But, can anyone enjoy a party at its best when not in good physical or mental health?

Achieve balance

In the end, it is all a matter of values, of balance, of goals to achieve. One might decide not to worry about spending time leading a healthy life and use time, instead, to live “to the fullest”. It is a choice, but do not complain and demand later that what you lost is recovered.

There is no way back for time, life and health. In what concerns health, even the best doctor will only be able to mend it.

Without health, how can you possibly enjoy love and friendship, how can you make the best of your fortune, how will you manage it? It is never too much to say that the balance of the mind and body is the best way to spell “Health”.
And I can assure you, there is a lot we can do.

Use common sense

Common sense is what it takes, but we do not use it. Like with everything else, adapting to reality is necessary in order to keep the equilibrium. It is difficult to accept that, as we get older, our capacities change, that life has made your best friend drift apart from you, that the love you have been sharing your life with may have acquired different characteristics (as both of you have changed) … but it will still be worth it, in a different way, that the beautiful house of your youth, full of memories, is “pulled down” to build a new one. It is difficult to step forward and leave the past behind … the past that will only be preserved as memories of what it used to be.

Are you sure you could not have avoided many things that happened in your life? Maybe not. That’s life and life represents ongoing decisions, everyday, every moment – and your body and mind depend on your choices.

Even when sand slides through your fingers, you can choose to either make the effort to close your hand as tight as you can or carelessly open your fingers wider and watch the sand go … with your eyes closed.

Best health wishes,
Dr. Maria Alice

By Dr Maria Alice
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Dr Maria Alice is a consultant in General and Family Medicine. General Manager/Medical Director – Luzdoc International Medical Service / Medilagos. Medical Director – Grupo Hospital Particular do Algarve