Friday, September 24, 2010

The Lost Path

There are many times in life where we can feel as if we have lost our way. The path no longer seems clear and the question, 'what do I do next?' does not bring a sense of adventure, but instead, feels like a crushing weight. When this happens, we have to rise above the moment and remember where it is we are trying to get to.

The easiest thing, the thing that should be done first, is to return to your map. Figure out what your strengths and weaknesses are; think about your hopes, dream, passions, commitments and goals. Once you have yourself oriented you can begin to look for a new path to the place you want to be in. In order to have time to study the map it is necessary to retreat from the world for a bit. To understand what we want we need to have quiet time to contemplate our own inner landscape without interruption. This may be a hour in our room or a weekend of hiking. If we try to solve the problem of what to do next in the place where the problem lives, the compulsion to act can be too great. This sort of action can lead us to run blindly through the forest like the next victim in a horror movie.

By knowing where it is we are headed we do not make the current situation any better, but we do make the path out of it more visible. The path is the series of actions that will take us to what we want. This focus should not be on short term wants, but instead long term goals. It is when our eyes fall to the level of fulfilling our short term desires that we lose the path. When we find a high hill and survey the landscape around us we can reorient ourselves to the long term and once again benign moving toward the place we want to be.


Charlie said...

On the other hand, a life spent contemplating in a room about the direction one is going in, and the directions one could possibly go instead might rely too much on assumed data. Sometimes you just need to shake things up (or sometimes fate shakes things up for you I guess). I always liked that saying, "a hundred travel books aren't worth a trip." I think sometimes if you're not happy where you are or where you're going, then you no longer have anything to lose by making a random change (job, location, hobbies.)

Quinn said...

Very true Charlie. With out action all the planing is useless. Even if we are picking random directions to run we still have choice about where we are going. The time to stand back and look at where we are is when there seems to be no paths to choose. The difference between the random changes you are talking about (job, location, hobbies) and my short term desires is they may be abrupt departure from long established patterns but they still serve to accomplishing a long term goal.

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