It’s the journey stupid

It’s the journey stupid

It’s interesting that we think in terms of goals as destinations.  There is really no such thing as a destination.  There can only be at best temporary stops on our journeys.  All we are about is the journey.  There are no necessary destinations except the grave.

Goals are good for getting us moving and in choosing a direction and a magnitude for our motion.  But, at the end of the day the goal is as random a way station as any other.  The value to us is in the motion and the journey

We are all pilgrims on our own Vias. Our own ways.  It is in the way that we learn and grow.  Whether you choose an actual direction or not you are deciding on the quality of your own way.

Deciding what direction to go does impact, or color, the value of the trip, but many times in ways we can’t understand before we start.  It’s a catch 22.  The direction we choose impact the quality of the trip but we can only guess how the direction will influence the trip.  We won’t know until we are in the trip. On the way.

This is why we rightly or wrongly imbue our goals with so much perceived risk.  It is not necessarily the risk of not achieving the goal, but the risk of having a bad trip on the way towards that goal.  The risk and opportunity cost of choosing the wrong direction.

I think you do yourself a disservice by creating too much pressure around the goal and the perceived risk.  Maybe ‘too much’ is the wrong way to say it.  A better way would be ‘inappropriate’. The goal or the direction is the seed from which the trip is constructed, and the tension around the unknown help us achieve motion, but the trip is the thing.

In fact the destinations with the biggest perceived risks and the greatest unknowns are also the destinations with the greatest treasure.  You will learn more, grow more and accumulate more personal value faster on the grand adventures.

You can always react while on your journey.  You can reset your destination and change your direction.  The important thing is the trip itself.  Open a random book to a random page and find a random place or thing to create your goal and you might do just as well.  There is a certain power of discovery to randomness.

What makes the trip important?

First you must start.  Without starting you are choosing to drift and sink.  Even if there is a high perceived risk and a great unknown you must start.  It is in the starting of motion that you start to accumulate the good stuff that comes from any trip.  Exert what force you must to get started.

Once you get started there will be forces that want to stop you, that push you sideways or backwards – that act in opposition to your progress. This is where you learn a lesson. That lesson is to keep moving.  There is great value in persistence.

On your trip you will meet people. On your trip you will see and experience things.  These are new things.  These are things that you would not have otherwise found.  This is the good stuff of the trip that add to your essence.

On your trip, I must remind you not to grip the wheel too hard.  I see too many people who are miserable in their trips and are missing opportunities.  They are so focused on the destination and the direction that they can’t see the infinity of the universe around them and lose so much of the value of the trip.  Don’t forget to smile.

Try to give on your trip, more than you take.  You will meet other wanderers and passengers and pilgrims and missionaries and refugees on your trip.  Some of them will be needy and scared.  Try to leave a part of yourself at each interaction in the form of small kindnesses.

Folks, takes all that stress and negative energy that you are currently investing in figuring out what your destination should be and invest it as positive motion energy in your trip.

And, I’ll see you out there.



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