Enjoy the Journey. It’s a phrase I use every day of my life now, especially when I get caught up in the everyday details of work. So often we forget to take a step back and enjoy the day we’re having, the conversation we are engaged in, the moment we are enjoying with our family or friends. Are we always so busy checking our phones for texts and emails that we forget to appreciate the good things that are happening right in front of us?
I’ve found that by Enjoying the Journey, I hold myself accountable in a positive ways. For instance, it forces me to take stock of where I am, where I’ve come from, and the progress that has been made. Too often we live in the future, worrying about the next meeting, the next assignment, the next message we must get to. We are often so eager to get to the end that we forget to appreciate what’s going on around us. In the words of Ernest Hemingway: “It is good to have an end to journey toward; but it is the journey that matters, in the end.”
Here are three things I’ve been doing to Enjoy the Journey:
- Keep a journal. Three of four times a week I’ll sit down for just 15 minutes or so and record what’s been happening in my life; and, more importantly, I’ll note what I’ve learned from it. I put tickets to sporting events and plays in the journey, notes from friends, and currency from countries I visit. I’ll include photos to remember a holiday or a dinner with a friend. And every now and then I page through the journal as a reminder of where I’ve been and how I became who I am now.
- Ruminate with trusted advisors. If they are true friends, your best and most trusted advisors will always be honest with you. They are on the journey with you and want you to be successful and happy. And when I have ideas — and I have a lot!—they help me decide if they are viable and on target with my core goals. All of this helps me keep things in perspective.
- Include your family. My wife Heidi is my north star, my rock of Gibraltar. Without her and my four kids there would be no reason to be on this journey. Too often we separate our home and work lives, but I’ve found we are happiest when we take our families along on our journeys. Taking time to reminisce and dream out loud with your loved ones can be the sweetest part of life.
I understand that “Enjoy the Journey” may sound pretty simple, and it probably is. But those three words had a profound impact on me. Again and again they remind me to keep things in perspective, to be fully present, and to make sure I am headed in the right direction for happiness. As I write in my journal, council with friends, and include my family, I know my odds of enjoying the journey and enjoying my life increase exponentially.
Now, I’d be interested in the best advice you’ve ever received, and especially how you keep yourself on the right path in life.