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  • Olivier S.E. Courtois

NDE - Lesson Three: Don't Judge the Book by the Cover!

Updated: Dec 22, 2020

I woke up at night, sweating, I couldn't move. I called the nurse. Courageously, she rolled me from one side to the other and changed my sheets again.

My convalescence was punctuated by the visit of devoted nurses who did everything for me as I had limited mobility.

For the hospital staff, I was patient X. A humbling experience.


My successive room neighbors - the single rooms were all full - reminded me of the fragility of life. In room one, my neighbor was a regular guest. Every fortnight, he had pain attacks and needed morphine. His life revolved around his attacks and his visits.


A young patient confided that his father didn't care about him. He was abandoned in hospital. His father - he added - was a doctor by profession.


My last neighbor had been there for 6 weeks with no hope of leaving any soon. He didn't know whether he would ever get better.


In those moments of humanity, there is no glory, no achievements, no titles. Those who pull it through, get back into the game of life. But, behind the facade, you never know what they went/are going through.


This is another lesson I got (from my 'NDE'): don't judge the book by the cover. Don't live in your ego bubble. Go beyond and try to understand who is behind the facade!


#leadership #personaldevelopment

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