Remember Jerry Wendell, the storekeeper life coach? He’s the proud owner of Jerry’s Gardening Store where you can buy everything from mouse traps and shovels to artificial green lawn and Zen garden sculpture. His strongest selling point is free advice on just about everything, from spring gardening tips to how you can remain calm when the rest of the world goes mad.
Chapter 2: It’s The Journey Rather Than the Destination That Matters
There hasn’t been much gardening in the last few weeks so when I couldn’t find my old pair of gardening shears I had this sudden urge to drop by Jerry’s Store, for new shears and a few words with the wise old man.
I found Jerry at his usual place behind the counter doing what he does best – dispensing overpriced gardening stuff and free expert advice on successful living. As expected, my purchase of new gardening shears was accompanied by a brief lesson on the journey of life. The lesson was prompted by what I perceived to be my failing memory at an early stage in life.
“If I can’t find a pair of shears I’d used a few weeks ago, how will I remember my name at 80 years?” I’d complained.
“Why are you so worried about what you’ll remember or be at 80?” Jerry asked.
“You could call 80 and beyond my ultimate destination,” I replied. “It matters, you know. The ultimate destination of my life.”
“Let me tell you son. Life is a journey in which every moment lived is a destination. It is a series of inter-connected destinations.”
“Really?” I asked with a noticeably puzzled grin.
“Don’t doubt me son,” Jerry warned. “I have seen, felt, and experienced a lot in my years but one thing I’m sure of is that life is a series of ultimate destinations, one leading to the next, in an endless journey. So it’s the journey rather than the destination that that you should focus on here.”
He then gave me an example of how we get it all wrong by focusing on the destination rather than the journey. He said the most beneficial or fulfilling experience in life is not in actually getting what you want but in seeking for it. It is the anticipation that gives value to the realization, not the other way round. Your dreams and goals move forward as you chase them but what you learn and discover along the way is more important than the goals you continuously chase in an endless horizon.
“The reason why people move from one place to another is to discover what lies in-between,” He said. “In-between is where you realize your true passions, find love, grow stronger, and where all your fond memories are made. So focus on the journey and what you achieve in-between and you’ll have a lot of great things to remember when you are finally 80.”
I was still digesting the lesson when he left to serve other customers.
A few minutes later, I left Jerry’s store with a new pair of shears and a decision to open a journal where I’d record every little priceless destination I reached every day or every week in this journey of life. You could say easier said than done but I’ll still give it a try. After all, completing the journal is not as important as the journey of writing those fun entries every day, or week.