We had the good fortune of connecting with Ahab Nimry and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Ahab, how has your perspective on work-life balance evolved over time?
Balance in general, in every facet of life, is everything. Work life balance is the most commonly questioned example because we spend most of our lives, days, hours at work: hence the first and most obvious issue. The fact that we have to even discuss and track balancing our time between working and living is a crazy notion if you really take or (in some of our cases) find the time to think about it. Let me try to answer this question with a little story about a conversation I had with my eldest son (who is 21 now) when he was 12 years old. We were talking about his middle school grades and how important they are, especially going into high school. Like most parents, I began to explain to him the need to maintain good grades in order for him to achieve success in his life beyond school. Well after my boilerplate dad speech about working hard so you can have a good life for you and your family once you get older, my son hit me with the most profound question I’ve ever heard from anyone at any age: He asked me, “Dad, so you’re saying that if I get good grades now and throughout high school I’ll be able to get into a good college?” I replied, “Yes.” He then asked, “So when I get into a good college and get good grades I’ll be able to graduate and get a good job that makes good money?” I said, Yes, exactly.” He continued, “Dad, then what?” I was confused by this question and he could see it in my face. I asked him, “What do you mean?”. He elaborated, “You’re saying that I need to get good grades in high school so I can go to a good college to get a good job so that I can make lots of money, right?”. I agreed. Then he dropped this bomb on me, “Then what? You work, make lots of money and then you die? That’s it?” I was blown away. I looked at him and flat out told him, “Damn son, that is the best question I’ve ever heard in my life.” I told him, ” I guess, yes. We work hard to make good money and try to provide for our families and enjoy our life until we die.” He said, “That doesn’t sound that great.” I was totally cracking up and trying to process what my 12 year old son had just taught me at the same time. I told him, “You’re absolutely right, that doesn’t sound great at all.”. I told him, “You know what, you just need to find something that you really love to do and get really good at it. Get so good at it that someone will pay you to do it all the time. Don’t worry about how much money it pays or what sort of long term path it will provide you. Just find something you truly enjoy doing and focus on that. The money and all the other social necessities that we prioritize will be there. The more important thing is to wake up everyday and be excited and passionate about what you’re doing. Doesn’t that sound like a better way to live?” He then replied, “Yeah dad, that makes much more sense.” Needless to say, that conversation with my then 12 year old son rocked my whole existence. It eventually led my wife and I to quit our jobs, sell our house and take our kids out of school to travel the world for about 6 months (That’s a whole other story). Once we got back from our world travels, I began my own business and my wife went back to school to get her Masters. Those life and career decisions were ultimately sent into motion to fix our current work life balance and even better it in the future. There is nothing more valuable in this world than time. Not money, not a title or status and definitely not material things. So why would we struggle with balancing work and life when life is worth an infinite amount more than work? AND, if you are truly passionate about what you do for “work” and really enjoy it everyday, well then there would be no real reason to need to balance it, right? The real question shouldn’t be, “How do you manage work life balance?”. You should be asking yourself and anyone you care about, “What do you really enjoy doing with your time?”. That question alone eliminates the need for that sort of balance.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
I started Gut branding here in San Diego almost 4 years ago. We specialize in creative development for corporate branding and identity, along with campaign work and full scale video/content creation. We are a nano creative strike force that build brands from the inside out–because we believe the best brands breathe like the rest of us. They have a pulse. A purpose. A soul. And more importantly, the courage to be themselves. So we couple authentic insight with well-crafted execution, to genuinely connect your brand with your audience, no matter the medium.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I absolutely love La Jolla, Point Loma and Carlsbad. San Diego beaches are some of the best in the world, honestly. I would spend an entire day at each beach/location for sure. San Diego has the best Mexican food in the world. I tell people that visit that San Diego has better Mexican food than Mexico. You can go to any 24 hour, hole-in-the-wall Mexican food spot anywhere in San Diego and eat well. San Diego also has some great sushi and seafood restaurants as well. Some specific spots I ALWAYS send people too are El Pescador in La Jolla; This is an amazing seafood market that cooks up fresh fish in a variety of ways. They have the best clam chowder I’ve ever had. I also love Kiko’s Mariscos Taco Truck in Mission Gorge. This taco truck sits in a gas station parking lot and serves up some of the most authentic and amazingly flavorful Mexican seafood dishes you’ll find. Unreal!
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Well, like I mentioned in my long winded answer to the work life balance question, my son was a huge influence on me. He’s 21 years old now, but the conversation we had when he was a 12 year old middle schooler has forever changed my perspective on work and life. It truly changed me world.