CAN A SIX YEAR OLD CHOOSE HIS OWN DESTINY? by Art Smukler, author & psychiatrist

“Who’s the boss?” six-year-old Jason asked me, as he watched waiters and patrons milling about the busy Italian restaurant.

Across the room, a man dressed in a suit and tie was writing in a notebook and directing a waiter to clean and set up a table that was just vacated. After a few moments, I got his attention and he came over to our table.

 “Jason has a question,” I said. “Do you have a moment to answer it?”

“Sure. What is it Jason?”

Jason hesitated, looked at me, then back at the man. “Are you the boss?” he asked, a very serious expression on his face.

“I am the boss,” the man said with a smile.

Jason nodded. “How come you don’t work as hard as everyone else?”

The boss laughed and shot me a smile. “No one ever asked me that question before… Well, I work hard, but as you can see, it’s a different kind of work. My work is to tell everyone else what to do.”

Jason nodded again. “Do you make more money than everyone else?”

An even bigger smile stretched across the boss’s face. “I do make more money. That’s why you have to work hard in school; so one day you can be the boss.”

Jason nodded, his little brow furrowed, as he brushed his hand across his short blond hair.

“Thank you very much for spending time with us,” I said.

“Thank you,” Jason said.

“You’re welcome,” the boss said, and returned to his duties.

We each took a bite of pizza and sips of our drinks. Then Jason looked at me, and with utter sincerity said, “When I get big, I want to be the boss.”

“What kind of boss?”

“The boss of Doctors.”

Check back in twenty years to see what happens…

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13 thoughts on “CAN A SIX YEAR OLD CHOOSE HIS OWN DESTINY? by Art Smukler, author & psychiatrist

  1. Wonderful post, I love it! I found your blog through a friend on LinkedIn and wanted to let you know you have a new follower and a fan! I look forward to your new posts.
    Wishing you abundant blessings,
    P.S. Would you mind if I added you to my blogroll as I mostly blog about finding inspiration despite being labeled as bipolar? I will follow your comments too and I look forward to hearing from you!


  2. Loved it. Reminds me of an old joke that you don’t need to be a brain to be the boss. I’ll have to tell you next time we get together.


  3. Good point by Jason , if the objective is to make more money, then managing doctors, as in an HMO, can make a lot more. But he needs to understand that doctors are devoted primarily to SERVICE and the wellbeing of others and hopefully earn enough to provide a more than adequate living style for themselves. Bernie


      1. So the old joke no longer applies? What’s the difference between god and a doctor? God doesn’t think he’s a doctor.
        I’ve met some specialists who think they are almost god.


  4. Loved this! He is right in the developmental stage whereby they go around saying to siblings, “you’re not the boss of me.”. So, seeing a boss in action, must have made a huge impression!


  5. Art, loved this one! My youngest son wanted to be an architect. I arranged a week for him in San Francisco with a dear pal who has his own agency. Upon his return Scott shared, “I don’t want to spend my life moving cabinets for rich bitches!” Scott now has his MBA and is a strategist for Fitch working on global brands.


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