This week I spent time making plans for my future. I’ve been asked a few times in the past month, “Nick, what are you going to do after you finish your degree?”, or “where do you see yourself in 10 years?”. My answer has always been in the right area. But I want to be “really successful” is vague and because I’ve been juggling between the goals in my football career and business goals, I’ve just been aiming in the right direction, but not really on a specific target. I also now have more experience in both careers so that I can judge better what’s required to be successful.
So I made some very specific aims. Starting with what I want to do for the rest of my life, how far I want to take what I want to do, when I want to do it, where I want to do it and how much I would need to do it.
Now I have a clear vision in my head. I’ve made plans like this so many times, and of course there’s a little bit of apprehension that comes with wanting to fulfill these goals.
Sometimes you can get so wind up about your plans and becoming a ‘success’. On a parent-teacher day in the 11th grade, my English teacher asked parents to write messages of support for their kids. My Dad wrote to me “enjoy the journey”. I didn’t really understand it at the time, but now I completely do. Things out of your control will affect your plans, but there’s absolutely no benefit to stress out about them. Instead you just gotta let the ups and downs flow. Because what I know well and truly is that the adventure of fulfilling your goals in life is not a day-by-day thing, it’s a marathon that takes months and years. Therefore your mood and your happiness shouldn’t be determined about what’s happening day-by-day either. Of course I’m by no means unhappy. I’m living my life exactly how I want to be living it. I’m chasing my dreams, I’m doing crazy things and it’s a great feeling to do that. All that I’m really missing is the fulfillment of these dreams. Like a piece of me is missing, and a feeling of ‘completeness’ because I haven’t achieved them yet. But now, I’m learning more and more that it just makes so much more sense to just be completely happy in the moment. To enjoy the journey, because lifes purpose is to live your every desire, but 99% of your time will be spent on making those desires come true and 1% living them. And once that’s done, then you start thinking about thing you’ll do!
Sam Harris explains:
[Talking about people on their deathbeds] “They wasted alot of time when life was normal. They cared about the wrong things. They regret what they cared about. Their attention was bound up in petty concerns. We all know this epiphany is coming. There will come a day when you’ll be sick or someone close to you will die and you’ll look back at the kinds of things that captured your attention. You’ll spend most of the time in your life, passively presuming you’ll live forever.
What we truly have is this moment. We spend most of our lives forgetting this truth. Reputing it. Fleeing it. Overlooking it. The horror is that we succeed at it. We manage to never really connect with the present moment, and find fulfillment there because we are continually hoping to be happy in the future. And the future never arrives. Even when we think we are in the present moment, we’re in very subtle ways always looking over it’s shoulder, anticipating what’s coming next. We’re always solving a problem. It’s possible to simply to drop your problem, and enjoy whatever is true of your life in the present.”
So here’s another post that goes deep. I could write about all the little events and things that go on during the week, but I feel it wouldn’t bring much value to you or me. All those things are just apart of the journey and really it’s the experiences you feel on the way which matter.
On final thought, I’ll always be challenging myself to make every one of my desires realized for the rest of my life. I’ll always be pushing to grow myself and to expand my limits. So it’s here I write myself a note that I will carry with me forever: Don’t feel down, because the future vision of yourself is not realised yet. Your future self is constantly evolving as you go through life. If your heart is always in the right place and you’re doing you, then you’ve already won. Enjoy the journey.