EP Alphabet – Is Enjoyment just in the moment?

When asking several people recently what enjoyment really is, the answer is intriguing

By Ben Butler, Consultant, EP Business in Hospitality

I recently spent New Year’s Eve with a host of friends in the ‘Little Paris of Middle Europe’. Over 20 of us flew in from various places in the UK and descended upon the medieval streets of Budapest where ruin bars run riot and sit entangled with the promenades, flea markets and historic baths. The Hungarian capital has an almost unique aura where one expects something extraordinary in the ordinary and it made for the perfect setting to see in the New Year.

It was a trip which ticked many ‘enjoyment’ boxes for me: friends, history, walking, music and food. In the days following you enter the expected ‘dull’ feeling where you miss exploring something new. It’s intriguing because it begs the question whether enjoyment is in the moment or when looking back at good times.

It made me think of recent interviews where the topic of enjoyment has been raised.

I’ve been fortunate enough to have met and interviewed many senior players from across the hospitality industry. Experienced authentic characters who have defined cultures and carried legacies down through generations. Looking back, it is fascinating to see a tangible central thread when it comes to ‘enjoyment’ – on the whole they reference the best experiences and memories they hold as ones they shared with colleagues who became friends.

They shared stories of achieving great feats, conquering the unconquerable and working together to make a difference. An interesting question on perception here, is whether they really enjoyed the experience at the time? They look back upon successes as times of great enjoyment, but did they know this when they were in the middle of it? Some also look upon fiascos as times of great enjoyment, “If I hadn’t failed, I wouldn’t be where I am now” – true, but can they really have enjoyed this experience at the time?

“But at the core if that when someone shares an experience with another and they both find enjoyment from this”

The definition of enjoyment is the action of state of enjoying, the possession and use and something that gives keen satisfaction. This makes you think that enjoyment is the good feeling ‘in the moment’ and that looking back at memories is something a little different?

It could even possibly be subjectively. But at the core if that when someone shares an experience with another and they both find enjoyment from this, it is at its most powerful. It’s a principle available to all and lets hope more focus on this as we enter 2019.