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Home / Articles / Columnists / Second Thoughts /  One- Eye OPEN
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Monday, February 4,2013

One- Eye OPEN

By Mort Crim  
The speaker was addressing a management group and he got a knowing laugh when he declared, “Only the paranoid survive.” It was clear he didn’t mean for his cynical overstatement to be taken literally — only that in today’s fast-paced, competitive, high-risk society, business leaders do have to stay on their toes. What is required isn’t paranoia, but vigilance.

Perhaps we could learn from the birds. Birds have demonstrated an ability to sleep with one eye open and half their brain awake. Research has now proven that birds possess this unique talent, and they’re especially good at it when there are predators around.

The way to be safe is never to be secure.
-Ben Franklin

How do they sleep and stay awake at the same time? Scientists at Indiana State University say they do it by using different parts of the brain. Their research leads them to believe that dolphins, seals, and manatees also can do this.

Learning to relax, to trust, to live life with an inner calm while at the same time remaining alert to danger is a difficult skill but one that’s essential to survival. Fortunately, we don’t have to be paranoid to survive in our kind of world. But we do have to keep one eye open.

 

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