“A man cannot step into the same river twice,” according to the Zen quote. The logic of this statement arises from the fact that the river of life is always moving, always changing. This is true for each one of us. Even if we think we are in a static stage, the world around us is dynamic: there is always growth and decline. Like it or not, we cannot get away from going somewhere, all of the time.
If we want to be all that we can be, we need to choose our destination and we need a map to get there. We then need to travel toward it. This is the final stage. Without this step, there can be no prize.
The destination is the ideal result we desire. Questions arise: What does it feel like when we actually have this ideal? What is it like at the end point of the journey? What is attractive there? Where 0 is not wanting it much at all, and 10 is to die for, how strong is the desire?
The map is the method or route to get to the destination. In business this could be the business plan. There are an infinite number of paths to most destinations; we sometimes get stuck because there are so many option.
Here I recommend we identify at least three routes to the ideal destination: one cautious and even pedantic; one at a normal, routine pace; and one that is edgy — what a trip! This could be described as splashy, fast, too easy to be true, with the risk of looking foolish. But it might just be possible.
If, for instance, one has a destination of attaining an ideal weight, there are many ways to get there. Design three. Travel is the doing part. If the map is the recipe, the travel is the cooking. Chose one of the routes derived above and follow it. Sometimes the doing is the hardest part.
If it feels too hard, go back to the destination and find one that is more desirable. What destination would be a 10? If the destination is not juicy enough, there is no commitment to travel. So even with the most clear and detailed map, it is all only prologue. We do not get the real prize.
I once worked with someone who wanted to grow the international sales side of their business. That was the destination, which we tightened down to specific dollar amounts. We derived a number of maps that all had the potential to succeed. But when it came to the travel part, not much happened. A bit of investigation revealed that the destination had a desire number of a tepid 6, at best.
In the process of exploring what might be more interesting, the wild card idea of selling or closing the business showed up as an extreme option.
Boom! The rating soared to a full 10.
The business was dismantled within five weeks. The new destination was to become an employee, with a regular paycheque and a job that included much more of what this person loved to do. The “have to” part was almost gone, replaced by delicious “want to” tasks. Better destination, easier map, and the travel was a delight. Life was a lot better. Destination, map and travel are the pillars that support you in being all you can be. What is going on with yours? If you are not deliberately and gleefully travelling, create a more interesting map or seek a more desirable destination.
Joseph Seiler, CPCC, is a success coach who helps people to be clear about what they want and to then go get it. You can contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.