Building a Business: At times, there can be just too much business

Gluttony, greed, lust not the ingredients for principled organization

“Temperance and labor are the two best physicians of man; labor sharpens the appetite, and temperance prevents from indulging to excess.”

-- Jean-Jaques Rosseau

You’ll recall that last time, we catalogued the perils of pride and envy in the pursuit of business success, but alas, we’ve barely dented the list of Seven Deadly Sins.

During this economic tumult, we’ve seen excesses like never before in our lifetimes ... excessive credit card and mortgage debt, inflated housing prices, financial malfeasance, Ponzi schemes, egregious compensation plans and much more. It’s no surprise, then, that three of these seven misdeeds are offenses of excess in various incarnations.

Gluttony appears on the list and is defined as the “inordinate desire to consume more than you require,” which originated with concerns for wasting food in the midst of poverty. Thomas Aquinas, a medieval religious thinker, even identified six ways to commit gluttony, including consuming too much, too soon, too eagerly or too expressively – maybe the perfect expression of the runaway consumer spending that brought our economy to its knees.


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