Journey versus Destination

A little over three years ago I left my corporate career in pursuit of a new path.  At the time I wasn’t sure of the destination and even today I am not quite sure.  Some might argue that is reason for concern and I would partially agree.  At times, I get a little concerned.  Perhaps those are my old preferences for structure and stability making their occasional uprising.  However, during some of the most challenging times of my masters programs I was asked by friends how things are going.  I answered, crazy busy.  So much work with school, consulting, coaching, graduate assistant position, etc.  But it hit me right then that, I’m happy.  I love everything I’m doing.  I’m enjoying every bit of it.

Clearly, at that point, I had not even completed my masters degrees, so at least we can agree I had not yet arrived at that destination.  That’s when I realized, it’s all about the journey.  It felt great when I received both masters degrees, but that was for a moment.  The journey lasted much longer than that moment.  Ultimately, I enjoyed both the journey and the milestone destination.

Now I am embarking on carving out a new career for myself.  Perhaps I should say, a new path.  Career sounds too work related.  I want my path to be about personal and professional aspirations.  A lifestyle business.  When I put it this way, the emphasis isn’t on the destination, as I have not even figured that out, but rather on the journey.  Wherever I end up will be fine with me, so long as I enjoy the journey.

Think about your own life.  What’s the journey like?  Do you know the destination?

Make sure you are making the most of the journey…it will eventually become what you look back on when you reflect on your life.  The milestone destinations will be important and special, but the real stories come from your journey.

Safe travels!

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5 thoughts on “Journey versus Destination

  1. What a great way to see things, Roger. I, too, have come to the conclusion that it is about how you get to where you are going and the ability to love your life as it happens. Never have I been happier in my career path. I’m making less than ten dollars an hour but love what I am doing and the students I am working with. God has thankfully blessed me with a husband who provides more than adequately for me and that’s the reason I can work here and not be frustrated financially. It is so nice to be in this place of complete joy and contentment. So glad you are so focused on what matters.

    • Thanks for sharing that Marla! I’m so happy you are “enjoying the ride.” I’m sure there will be bumps along the road but that goes for any journey. I think that’s the most important part of enjoying the journey – taking the bumps and making the most of them. Congrats on the awesome journey and keep enjoying!

  2. I think the problem with focusing on the destination is that each time you reach one there is just find a new one on the horizon. Soon you are spending too much time focusing on what is to come to really live what you are doing now. I think back to all the destinations I thought were important growing up, those milestones that I thought would mean my life had really started, and, while many of them are important and notable, living life just to reach those points become a lot like a check list. Sometimes at school I talk about what I want to be when I grow up (it’s unclear at this point exactly what that is) and my students look at me like I’m crazy. They figure at 30ish they’ll have it all planned out, that they will have this life that they have mapped out their heads. I try hard not to laugh when they tell me exactly how their lives are going to work because goodness knows it rarely goes the way we planned it, but that’s the good part. For a planner like me, it’s hard to accept sometimes, but that’s one of the best things about life. It’s a great journey, one that can’t be measured out on checklists of destinations because those have to keep growing and evolving. While I have made it to some of the milestones I’d set up for myself, there are parts of my life that 18 year old me would never have expected; they are some of the best and I wouldn’t change them.

    • Thanks for sharing that Kristen! I think it’s great you talk to your students about what you want to be when you grow up. I think it encourages life long learning, growth, and development. Doesn’t matter how old you are, there’s always a journey and many new destinations. Essentially, you are promoting the journey. Thanks again for sharing!!

      So what do you want to be when you grow up? 🙂

      • A ninja? Kidding. I’m not sure exactly. I know I love working with students and seeing them learn and hearing their opinions and their ideas, but I worry about the burnout that tends to accompany long teaching careers. I’ve thought about several things: switching to college instruction, school counseling, administrative work in curriculum design, but they all have their own advantages and drawbacks.

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