Monday, April 28, 2014
Meander while succeeding ...
You might not think that if you listen to the "success experts" who tell you to "CRUSH!" your day, and keep knocking out your goals one after another. There can be some wisdom in doing just that, but you'll miss what's important in life if that's all you do.
That's because a lot of these coaches and "gurus" are just talking and writing from formulas someone taught them about completing activities that achieve an objective. Most of them spend little time considering that life is also full of people and potential experiences which we need to make room for if life is going to be full, fulfilling, and more than a to-do list.
Architect Frank Lloyd Wright once told of an incident that seemed insignificant at the time, but had a profound influence on the rest of his life. The winter when he was nine years old, he went walking across a snow-covered field with his reserved, no-nonsense uncle. As the two of them reached the far end of the field, his uncle stopped him. He pointed out his own tracks in the snow --- straight and true as an arrow's flight --- and then young Frank's tracks meandering all over the field.
"Notice how your tracks wander aimlessly from the fence to the cattle, to the woods, and back again," his uncle said. "And see how my tracks aim directly to my goal. There is an important lesson in that."
Years later, the world-famous architect liked to tell how this experience had greatly contributed to his philosophy in life.
"I determined right then," he'd day with a twinkle in his eye, "not to miss most things in life, as my uncle had."
Don't misunderstand: I'm NOT saying that focus, discipline, and even expediency aren't important, but life is a little bigger than just that. Take, for example, the life of Jesus, who pursued the single most important mission any man has ever had. Some of the greatest stories about what Jesus said or did come from times when He was interrupted in the process of His earthly ministry. His mission journey was not a straight line from the carpenter's shop to the cross. His tracks meandered all over!
What do your tracks through life look like? Are you just pursuing checking off items on a never-ending to do list? Or are you making room for people and experiences beyond the tasks necessary to achieve specific objectives?