What do we think of, seeing these two words? Human, well, we are all humans, living on our planet. The word human can be used to set us apart from animals. It can relate to how we behave – to be human, or humane.

Odd then, that if one were to look at how the word humane is used, it seems that it is used more often in the context of how we treat animals, than our fellow humans. How humane am I when I scold my employee for being late, only to find out later that his taxi service was delayed, and she has been stressing about being late for work all the way in that taxi. Or telling off my young child for having spilt milk, when he suddenly followed his strong sense of curiosity and playfulness, seeing a bird in the window, limbs gesticulating wildly.

What about being? Not such an easy word to define. It can have spiritual connotations, and many religions refer to being. It refers at times to other beings: Sentient Beings are other living things on our planet. There may be Beings outside of our planet, as many a science fiction book describes.

But being can be much more practical – it can also be a verb, something we are and do. How am I being today? Am I being myself, or what my boss wants me to be, or my partner? Am I being the best person I can be? Am I focused on being here, right now, or am I worrying about what might happen later? When my 3-year old needs me to be with him right now, and is tugging at my leg, saying ‘Papa, Papa’, where am I being? On the cell phone, in deep (worry) thought, watching TV or preparing a meal?

Makes you think…. In coaching we frequently focus on spending more of our time and effort on being the very best human we can be – all the time. This is quite a challenge. Think back to the last 5 minutes prior to reading this article. Did you make the very most of those 5 minutes, like they were the last 5 minutes of your life?

Now consider how different your life will be if you spend all of your time on what really matters to you, and those around you. Instead of worrying, daydreaming, procrastinating, even watching TV, dare I say it….

How will my eulogy read: ‘he was born and died’, or, …….‘she changed children’s lives, she was the best friend anyone could wish for, she built this business, she will be remembered for being ….’

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