Why Your Final Destination Is Taking Joy Away From Your Journey
Raise your hand if you’ve ever caught yourself saying something like, “Once I lose this weight I know I’ll be happier,” or “As soon as we move into a new house I’ll feel more in control.” The truth is, both of those things may be true, and while they may bring you happiness or more control in the end, they completely discount all of the time you’re spending in the middle.
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Many of us have been “destination living” for most of our lives without even knowing it. We’re counting down the weekdays until we can get to the weekend and we’re spending days, weeks, months and sometimes even years waiting to get to a specific point in our lives without taking advantage of or acknowledging the stage of life we’re in right now.
“Destination living” causes us to miss the little moments, live for the future and neglect the now. As we hope and pray that once we reach a specific destination like a new weight, a new city, a new haircut, a new financial status, a new job, a new home, etc., we seem to miss what’s going on right in front of us over and over again.
We desperately wait for the relationship, money, or job to come our way while doing anything we can think of to boost our chances of earning it. We convince ourselves that we’ll be able to find the love or stability that we have desperately been seeking once we get to a specific place in our lives, and as we wait to earn it, we waste the time leading up to it. Here’s the thing: If we’re always waiting to get to the next destination or have the next best thing, we forget to enjoy our current situation and we look for ways to rush through large portions of our life in order to skip to the highlights. You see, if we’re not grateful for our current destination, we won’t be thankful for our next one or the one after that. Gratefulness is a mindset, not a product of our situation.
Getting rid of destination living
In order to get rid of destination living, you must begin to understand how you can use your current position in life to propel you into the next one, instead of trying to skip it altogether. To curb destination living, focus on practicing gratitude, remind yourself of the power of your mindset and begin to find joy in the in-between. Practicing gratitude is one of the most powerful things you can do in your life. Each morning, wake up and write down the top three things you are grateful for that day. Think hard about these things and be honest with yourself. On day seven or eight, when it feels like you’re beginning to run out of things you are grateful for, you’ll truly begin to stretch yourself and see all of the small things you’re grateful for in this current season of life that you’ve been missing the whole time.
After you practice gratitude, you need to remind yourself of the power your mindset holds. Mindset can change anything and it can allow you to do a full 180-degree turn when you allow it to work for you and not against you. Every time you find yourself wishing away the current stage of life you’re in, remind yourself of how powerful your mindset can be and begin to make the shift in your mind from something negative to something positive. This will help you see things differently. When you begin to notice in a new light, you’ll begin to better enjoy what you are going through.
Finally, if you catch yourself being a victim of destination living, one of the best things you can do to help yourself is to begin to find joy in the in-between. While this can be one of the most difficult tips to follow, it can also be one of the most powerful. Just as it’s exhausting to travel all day and rush from plane to plane, it is equally as exhausting to try to rush through different stages of your life in order to get to a specific destination.
I have always found that while traveling, the least stress comes when I am able to enjoy the journey rather than having to rush through it. There’s something special about driving down the highway, taking in all the scenery, and having a few good conversations with my travel buddy on the way. When I finally get there, I have some good memories from the journey to add to the entirety of the trip. Sometimes, the most growth and the deepest beauty come from the journey, not from the destination. If you’ve caught yourself waiting to be happy or to take back control of your life until you get to a certain weight, house, city, job, or relationship, do yourself a favor and throw the final destination out the window. Take a deep breath in and remind yourself to enjoy the now. After all, where you are right now is a destination you have previously hoped for, and where you’ll be in the future is a destination you’ll be proud to look back on while reflecting on the journey you took to get there.
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