Killing the goose that laid the golden egg – not a good idea

Killing the goose that laid the golden egg – not a good idea

“We must know, like farmers, we can’t sow and reap the same day.” — Anonymous

Greed can be a powerful motivator to take a short-sighted action that destroys the long-term profitability or viability of an asset or a relationship.

In Aesop’s famous fable, a farmer and his wife kill their golden egg laying goose because the goose might have gold inside. As it turns out, the goose is like any other goose inside so no more golden eggs for the couple.

We can see examples of “killing the golden goose” in sports with athletes taking performance enhancing drugs for short-term performance gains at the risk of scandal, sponsorship and even long-term health. Businesses like Enron and WorldCom killed the golden goose by falsifying their accounting to inflate next quarter’s profits.

On a personal level, killing the golden goose might be lying on a resume (misleading), cheating on an exam  (not doing the work) or taking someone’s ideas as one’s own (breaking trust).

A better approach? Do the work and be impeccable with your word. Patience and trust are the golden goose.

Live life fully and without regret!


David B. Glover, MSE, MS, CSCS
Founder, School of Tri
Author of Full Time and Sub-Nine: Fitting Iron Distance Training into Everyday Life


  1. I am just seeing this Sunday morning. The day after Katie finished 2nd in her age group in her first Olymypic tri of the season (Tri the Lakes). She dropped almost an hour from her first Olympic at Luray last August. She was nervous about her race Friday evening but I told her that she would do well because she has done all the hard-work, made good decisions, and made all the necessary sacrifices. Your blog reminds me that this applies to all of life and especially in relationships. Thanks David.

  2. Wow, Peter, congratulations to Katie on her Tri the Lakes race – that’s an AMAZING drop in time!

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