Be water, my friend.

Many remember this famous quote by Bruce Lee, but I am afraid that time and interpretation have not served the author’s intention well. So this wisdom, which I happen to consider the most fundamental of humanity, has lost a lot of its edge.

Dedicated readers of this newsletter will know about my obsession with apple trees. They stand as icons of nature reminding us to live according to our truth, relentlessly and unapologetically. However, there is a specific quality to this that is best visualized with the analogy of water. 


Water, like us, has a specific nature. It behaves in certain ways depending on the circumstance. These ways are the rules of its game. They are not up for discussion. 

If water flows downhill, it will penetrate any opening down to the size of its molecular structure, H2O. There are many more rules it has to abide by, but these are the most common ones.

And when water does what water does, we say “it flows.” But what this denotes is that it simply behaves according to its nature, which is flow. 

Another way to put this is to say that it “follows the path of least resistance.” 

This doesn’t just mean that it will flow around obstacles, but that it will not go against its own rules. Water will not resist its own nature. 

This is the secret to life and the recipe for HAPPINESS.


When you discover who you truly are, you connect with your truth, your rules, your nature. All you need to do is follow this nature without any resistance and your reality will become that of flow

Consequently, you will become like water, or air, or an apple tree. This, and only this, will be the source of a deep state of HAPPINESS from which your Happy Work can emerge. Water’s Happy Work is everything it does while following its nature. 


Again, water is water. It can’t be anything different. But humans can. And that’s not always a good thing. We fool ourselves into embracing and following a nature other than our own; into believing that there is a truth other than our OWN truth. 

That’s when we lose our flow. That’s when we introduce resistance and when we fall out of our HAPPINESS and become chasers of dreams that aren’t ours.

That’s when we open ourselves up to fear and invite a transactional mindset. Suddenly, we are not like water anymore, but like water that tries to be wood. It’s an impossibility, but one we don’t realize until it’s too late, and we break. 

Be water, my friend. 

I invite you to do the work. Liberate yourself from that which binds you, open yourself up to YOUR truth, recognize your OWN rules and FLOW according to them and nothing else. Happy Work is a choice.

As always, if you ever want to chat or have a question—I’m only an email away.


Olivier Egli 

Listen to our latest episode → Be Like Water 

28 Questions of Reflection  → Questions


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