Ralph Waldo Emerson once commented that life wasn’t simply a destination, but rather a journey. I would wholeheartedly agree. I have witnessed the beautiful journey of discovery, exploration and destiny that we each have the opportunity to harness within our own lives.
Unfortunately, as a society that spends an inordinate amount of time racing towards that next big milestone, slowing down to savor the journey is easier said than done. Stopping to smell the proverbial roses defies the very “enough is never good enough” fiber that’s been woven into our psyche. It’s that voice inside our head claiming that just one more “thing” (fill in the blank whether it’s tangible or abstract) will put us one step closer to true contentment.
But when does that one more thing bringing the promise of eternal prosperity and peace actually arrive? My fear is that with the light speed at which we live our lives; if and when it does land at our doorstep, we won’t be awake to recognize it.
At What Price Are We Running (from) Our Lives
I have lived that life as long as I can remember. I’ve worked 80 hour weeks, juggled multiple projects and burned the midnight oil until the wheels of creativity ground to a halt. The problem I’ve only recently recognized was the destination I thought I was running towards was in actuality a life I was running away from. Not on purpose mind you, but with the misguided belief that “contentment” equaled complacency and that would never amount to happiness.
I reflect now on the little league games, school plays and anniversaries that I only enjoyed from the sidelines. I was a stranger in my own life and true contentment was not a part of the equation. Until I made a conscious choice to slow down and enjoy the journey.
Let Your Journey Begin Today
Life has so much to offer when we decide to stop chasing a destination and start soaking in all that the journey offers.
Now I know I’ve lost many of you “Type A” or High D personalities. You are so caught up in your self-important (gasp) world that missing out on moments that matter is only a fleeting after thought. You are so trapped by the day-to-day of running your business that you have forgotten why you got married, had a child, bought a house, started your business and embarked on this life journey in the first place. Believe me, I’ve been there and I can tell you unequivocally – WAKE UP now or regret it later.
A Life Controlled by Woulda, Coulda, Shoulda isn’t Worth Living
If the picture I’ve painted hits home, the life lessons (replete with my own unique wisdom) is this:
- The little things in our lives do matter so do them – Every Single Day.
- Loving what you do EVERYDAY is more important than enjoying what you do somedays so don’t wait one more day to stop just getting by.
- Wasting your life on a destination and not enjoying the moments that make up your journey equal years of your life wasted.
- Don’t wake up 10 years from now wanting what you had then.
- Wishing and hoping do not mean your dreams will come true. Put up or shut up and start living your life.
- Working until you bleed company colors will not make you happy, satisfied or rich. Love, family and the joy that accompany a full life is what make your world go round.
Tomorrow means that today is your yesterday. It’s your life; how will YOU choose to live it?