Isn’t it funny how we think about life in the terms of ‘when we get there’? What do I mean by this? Well let me give you a few examples of things that go through all our heads at one point or another:
If I can just get through this week at work, then I can actually enjoy my life this weekend.
As soon as I get my promotion, I can finally prove to myself and others that I belong here.
I need to run the kids to practice then go to the grocery store and get everything in the oven before my guests arrive so I can finally relax and unwind.
Do any of these sound familiar? They sure do to me! If we aren’t careful, life can start to resemble a long string of never-ending chores that must be completed before we can enjoy ourselves. I find that the holidays often take this mindset to a whole new level. We get so caught up in what we need to do to get ready for the season that we forget to enjoy the season itself. Before we know it, the living room is full of wrapping paper, the kids are upstairs with their new electronic devices, and we wonder where the holiday went.
I experienced this myself recently. A little backstory: my husband owns a business and every year, I have so much fun buying little goodie bags for his employees. Even though I usually don’t include anything large or expensive, I have such a good time creating thoughtful gifts, placing them in gorgeous boxes, and wrapping them all up in perfect holiday bows.
This year, I was totally behind the eight ball. I’d taken on a big client and it was eating up a lot of my free time. Before I knew it, time had slipped away and I had to get those gifts done ASAP if they were going to make it into the mail in time. So I ran to the store, hurriedly bought my items, and put together my little boxes—just in time to send with the postman. Then I suddenly realized—I hadn’t enjoyed the process at all. In fact, I barely remembered creating the perfect bows that I usually took so much pleasure in. Yep, I’d taken my eye off the journey and fast-forwarded to the destination or just getting it done. And the process had lost all of its magic.
When you really stop to think about it, our lives are just one big journey. We’re never guaranteed of a destination (even if we think we’ve got it all under control and nailed down.) We never know if the destination will actually bring us the satisfaction and joy we so desire (and many times, it doesn’t.) But we know one thing—there will always be the journey. There will always be the last-minute trips to the store and the early-morning struggle to get the kids’ lunchboxes packed and the Monday meetings where inevitably someone is always late and someone else is in a bad mood.
And guess what? The secret to life—the real secret—is to enjoy those moments that are always guaranteed, always part of our lives, and, more often than not, ignored or ‘endured’ in favor of some grand destination that we always think is at the end of the road but so rarely is. The secret to fulfillment is so rarely in the destination. It’s in those little moments that, if we aren’t careful, continue to pass us by.
With over 20 years of experience as a strategic consultant for global Leadership and Development initiatives with some of the world’s top Fortune 500 companies, Trish Cody has coached and consulted with senior level teams in planning, designing, launching, and measuring the return for major initiatives.
As a Certified Professional Coach and Energy Leadership Master Practitioner, Trish works with entrepreneurs, senior leaders and their teams to uncover their real desires for their organization, and then to align those desires with their values to co-create a strategy for execution and accountability. The leaders Trish partners with are truly working their own best plan for success in achieving their desired “new state” and weathering the changes that success brings.
To learn more about how Trish can help you and your team with one-on-one coaching, team coaching or speaking at your event, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.