“It’s often the bends in the road that make life worth the drive.”
Image from Unsplash by Denys Nevozhai
When was the last time you took a long car ride? Go back in time to look at those family vacations where you loaded up the station wagon, minivan, or SUV and headed to parts unknown, to kick back and take life at a slower pace.
These days, many of us check our most popular navigation app to get where we want to go as directly as possible. This direct and speedy route often involves highways, lots of cement, asphalt, other vehicles, the occasional farm, and perhaps cows grazing along the road.
In what ways are the twists, turns, and bends in the road of life taking you on a much more meaningful and fulfilling journey? What intentional detours can and will you take now and in the future to enjoy the ride even more?
“The stuff that wears on your nerves polishes the soul.”
Image from Unsplash by AbsolutVision
I remember, as a very young boy, my mom polishing silverware that was handed down from her mother. With actual polish and a bit of elbow grease she made it sparkle for special occasions such as family celebrations and holidays.
Over months and sometimes years of lack of use, it became increasingly tarnished.
How have our souls become tarnished through recent events?
Where and how can you and those around you use the many aspects of our society that are getting on your nerves as polish to create a brighter and more soulful future?
“Everything you’ve ever wanted is on the other side of fear.”
Image from Unsplash by Benjamin Davies
When have you faced your fears recently?
When have you faced a particular fear in the past?
What results did you produce, and how did getting to the other side feel?
What frightens you these days? Dig below your surface answers and keep asking yourself what else? What else?
How does this fear show up in your body and mind? Take note of these thoughts and feelings, because they are clues where you can summon the courage to break through these barriers in the future.
In what ways can you take on a few of your smaller fears today?
Where can you summon the support of others in your personal and professional communities to take on a few of the bigger ones?
What is there to gain on the other side?
“Goals are like magnets. They’ll attract the things that make them come true.”
Image from Unsplash by Markus Winkler
Years ago, I was challenged by a colleague to look at goals differently.
Instead of looking at a goal through the SMART lens, he suggested using the words “To Be” and “To Have” to express goals as a future and not simply as a way to measure or quantify an outcome.
Since most of us value our health, I propose this example:
||To be healthy and fit
||1) To lose 15 pounds by December 31
||2) To lower my cholesterol below 200 and get off meds by this time next year
||3) To have my RealAge be less than my chronological age within three months
How can and will you describe your goals as futures, to magnetize your own inspired efforts and other resources to make these dreams come true?
“It is very sad to me that some people are so intent on leaving their mark on the world that they don’t care if that mark is a scar.”
—John Michael Green, American Author of Looking for Alaska
What constitutes a good day? What are the foundations of a good life? Where do you look when considering such questions?
Luckily, the research on such matters is extensive. Virtually all sources agree that having purpose and making a positive difference in the lives of others is fundamental.
In his book, Give and Take, Adam Grant points to the fact that giving and contributing to others and society provides both intrinsic and extrinsic rewards. The book, The Five Love Languages, points to the ways we and others in our world demonstrate love for each other, through simple daily acts of generosity and care.
Where and in what ways can you make an even bigger and more positive mark on your world? How and in what ways can you encourage and support others in your various communities to do the same?
“Leaders don’t force people to follow—they invite them on a journey.”
—Charles S. Lauer, late publisher of Modern Healthcare magazine
Image from Unsplash by Matt Heaton
We have all been taken to school lately on the subject of Leadership. What messages are you hearing that touch and stir your head, heart, and soul?
Who is speaking a future that resonates on the frequency of your vision and value?
Who is describing a journey with passion and purpose? Who is inviting you to contribute your best to a worthy mission?
When strong leaders demonstrate such qualities in words, actions, and enduring character, they engender us to follow and become leaders as well.
Where have you been called and invited on an important journey?
Where can and will you invite others in your personal or professional communities to join you in creating a better world?
“Take only memories, leave only footprints.”
—Chief Seattle, Duwamish Tribe Leader & namesake of the City of Seattle
Image form Unsplash by NASA
Many of us are living simpler and more essentially these days. Taking less seems to be giving many of us more of the intrinsic things we value most.
I can recall visiting the Disney World exhibit sponsored by Kodak—the powerhouse of photography—when my kids were little. The catchy tune “Making Memories” inspired us to take a photo safari around the park, taking snapshots of us wearing the wild hats in each gift shop, without making a single purchase.
I also easily recall being glued to the TV in 1969 when man landed on the moon. Although some rocks were taken for study, the most impressive visual I recall was the astronauts jumping for joy, and of course, the many footprints they left, establishing the fact that they were there.
How would your life become even more fulfilling and meaningful if you embraced Chief Seattle’s coaching?
“We wander for distraction, but we travel for fulfillment.”
—Hillaire Belloc, 20th Century British-French writer and historian
Image from Unsplash by Anastasia Petrova
To what degree are you a wanderer or a traveler? Since most of us are not using trains, planes, or automobiles as often as usual, consider taking a look at your media and social media journeys.
How often do you find yourself surfing the web and giving your remote a workout to fill the time and distract you from boredom or the hard realities we are all facing in this pandemic?
Alternatively, how are you planning your days with intention and focus, to travel paths toward specific destinations and goals?
Where and how would more traveling and less wandering through your days lead to a more fulfilling life?
What one specific action will you take today to begin this journey?