Often in life, we get caught up in small, daily routines. We stumble over the little things, forgetting more joyful moments.
Small experiences are the building blocks of our lives, and they are important. However, what if we took time every now and then to take a step back and consider our whole life as a journey?
By looking at the bigger picture, would you be willing to let minor inconveniences ruin an entire day? How would it change the way you spend your free time, or the time you spend both in and out of the office? How could it affect your outlook on everyday life?
Consider living your life as a journey. It is a concept that takes practice to master, but ultimately, it could help you feel more fulfilled and at peace with the difficulties of life. I know it has worked for me.
Life as A Journey: What Do You Want to Do with Yours?
The main point is allowing yourself to let go of the small details that keep you up at night in favor of a more holistic world view.
For example, you may have lost a potential client at work today, but your agonizing over that fact will neither support your overall well-being nor necessarily be an appropriate reaction, given how little you know about what working with that other person would be like. They could have been a poor match for your organization, making it better in the long run that they didn’t sign on with you.
Plus, in the grand scheme of things, having one bad day will only affect the outcome of the rest of your life if you let it. By taking a step back and appreciating all of the positive experiences in your life, you can recognize that this singular bad one isn’t something to be ruminating over.
The question at large, then, is this: If life is a journey of experiences, do you want to spend time focusing on the negative, or enjoying the positive while embracing the negative as learning experiences?
The decision is, ultimately, up to you.
Learning to See the Bigger Picture
Of course, embracing this idea of life as a journey of experiences will take time and practice. We, as humans, are often hardwired to get lost in the details. This can be helpful in some instances, but being too meticulous with every aspect of our lives can make us feel anxious and inhibit our abilities to make strong connections.
These are a few practices that you can add to your routine for when you need to take a step back:
Identify Growth Inhibitors
Do you have negative habits that could be stopping you from seeing your journey of experiences?
Do you base your view of yourself off what others think? Do you fear taking risks?
Take some time to get to know yourself and find the ways you may unintentionally be holding yourself back from growing.
Seek Out New Skills
Taking on a new skill is a good way to keep your brain functioning at its highest potential. It is also a great way to expand your worldview and gain a deeper understanding of yourself and others.
You could approach a co-worker from a different department to learn more about what they do and the skills they use to be successful in their job.
It could also be something you take up in your personal life, like painting or playing a musical instrument.
Whatever you decide to do, allow it to pull you out of your regular routine as a way of recognizing that there’s so much more to life than what you’ve set out in front of yourself.
Find Ways to Learn
Individuals often talk about learning from their mistakes, which is important and necessary. If you can find ways to healthily reflect on an uncomfortable situation and see it as an opportunity for growth, you are making a positive choice in viewing your life as a journey of experiences.
I would also encourage you to find ways to learn from the positive experiences in your life, as well. Be mindful of the things that take place in your life and put them in the context of your long-term goals. How is every step informing the story of your life? Is it heading in a direction that you’re content with? These are a few questions to ponder as you do so.
You are more than any of your mistakes and your life is not defined by your worst days. Instead of dwelling on the difficulties that you experienced, you may find it more productive to put those times into the perspective of your whole life. Do not spend more time worrying about past things that you can’t control. Live in the present.
I would love to hear how you incorporate your life experiences into your big picture life journey that is meaningful for you. If you find yourself wrestling with this idea of life as a journey of experiences and would like more information, I’d be happy to speak with you. We can talk in-depth about how you want to spend your journey.