I am really lucky that I (this is Jason speaking) discovered the ancient science of Ayurveda through Sharon and her original studies in this area. You see, Sharon studied under one of the experts in this field from India, and had incredibly high standards when it came to assessing whether someone understood what was being taught. Despite being a tough son of a gun, his dedication to making sure his students developed a deep understanding of what he was teaching meant that Sharon developed a level of knowledge that many simply haven’t had access to. This meant that I had access to the best available information.
As a naturally curious person, I started asking lots of questions whilst putting my own practices in place. I remember becoming fascinated by the fact that the principles of Ayurveda - which translates as The Science Of Life in the Sanskrit language - seemed to also apply to many other situations and circumstances.
Given I am a little obsessed with the topics of business and careers, I started to wonder…could it be that this body of knowledge can offer explanations and remedies for these types of things? I set out to discover for myself.
The Five Elements
I should explain from the outset, both Chinese medicine AND Ayurvedic Medicine refer to the Five Elements, which are similar but also different. One is not more right than the other, they are just different systems that are equally useful. I am going to focus on the Ayurvedic version.
According to Ayurveda, everything in the cosmos, matter and energy, is made up of five elements - Ether, Air, Fire, Water and Earth. These five elements then combine to form three energetic intelligences that govern all things:
Vata - which literally means that which moves things.
Pitta - which literally means that which digests/transforms things..
Kapha - which literally means that which holds things together .
When these three intelligences/properties are in balance, life is grand. You should attend Sharon’s awesome workshop to discover your unique Body-Mind Blueprint.
The more I thought about it, the more I realised that the balance of these three properties indeed could be applied to pretty much anything. Here are just a few examples…
Effective Communication requires movement of information (Vata), which needs to be transformed into understanding (Pitta), and requires some sort of connection between those involved (Kapha). It is the balance of these three properties that will ensure communication is effective, and an imbalance can create problems. Interesting right?
A Job requires someone to perform their tasks (movement), transform this activity into some sort of result (transformation), and have some sort of connection to what is being done (connection).
An idea requires the movement of thoughts (Vata), figuring out how to transform the idea into reality (Pitta), and needs some sort of ‘glue’ to hold everything together whilst this is happening. (Kapha).
Keep going for yourself and you will start to see the pattern. It works, and applies to pretty much anything, everytime. Not surprising really given they are essential universal forces.
A reliable way to diagnose problems and improve things?
This is the next thing I set out to find out. There are plenty of techniques out there to help people make decisions and solve problems, but not many of them work all that well all of the time. So, I created a checklist based on the existing Ayurvedic knowledge that The Juicy Effect uses all of the time, and started to assess problems against this checklist. Does this thing have a movement problem? Does this thing have a transformation problem (ie is it evolving or staying the same)? Does this thing have a connection problem? Time and again I found this simple technique to be a wonderful starting point to take a new perspective on problems and opportunities, in and out of work. Not for a moment am I suggesting that it is the only technique you will ever need ever again, but I now use Ayurvedic principles to diagnose and treat all sorts of problems in the business world.
If this sounds interesting, drop into our How To Improve Your Work Life Using The Five Elements workshop that runs every week. You will certainly learn something that you will not find in any business text book.