Choose Your Direction, Not Your Destination


Week 397 (brendan@brendanbarca.com)

Here's your weekly dose of Fuel Your Mind Friday where I share business building ideas, lifestyle design hacks, and inspirational content to help you thrive in your work and find purpose in your life.

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PSA: My wife, Pema Sherpa, and I have another blog called The Mindful Minute! Check it out.

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CHOOSE YOUR DIRECTION, NOT YOUR DESTINATION

If you don't know where you're going, how are you going to get there?

Recently, I grabbed coffee with a friend who was in the midst of a career crossroads.

"I've been working for over a decade," he told me, "and still don't know what I want to do with my career. I feel more lost now than I did when I was starting out."

"Have you put your thoughts to paper?" I asked.

"I've tried it. I can never settle on one path. That's when I freeze. That's why I'm still stuck in this job."

"I get it. Can I share an idea that might help?"

"Go for it."

"When we're at a crossroad in our life, we tend to all get caught in the same place," I explained. "We think we need to know our final destination before we choose our direction. But this is wrong."

"I'm not sure I get it," he replied. "If I want to fly somewhere, like Miami, I need to choose my final destination before I book my ticket. Our destination guides our direction."

I laughed at this point before replying.

"Think of it less like flying to a destination, and more like driving. Our careers are never as smooth and direct as a flight. They're more similar to driving cross country, with many twists and turns and adventures."

He took a sip of his coffee and let me go on.

"Picture this. Let's say you're in Kansas City and you want to go on a roadtrip. When you set out, you don't necessarily need to know your final destination. All you need to know is which general direction to head. What are your options?"

"East or west?"

"Exactly. On the first day, all you need to do is decide whether you want to head east or west. It's not until days later that you'd have to choose your destination. If you headed east, you could go on for some time and learn a lot along the way before deciding between New York and Miami."

"So... I just need to choose east or west?"

"Yes. Maybe it's a decision between joining a corporation or startup, going into tech or healthcare, or doing sales or marketing. These are your east vs. west decisions."

"But, how do I decide on going east or west? Both seem nice."

"What does your gut say?"

He thought for a moment before replying, "West."

"Then grab your keys and head west. Along the journey, your final destination will reveal itself."

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Thanks for subscribing,

- Brendan

Let's connect on LinkedIn!

brendanbarca.com

p.s. If you're a longtime subscriber you may have noticed this is a repost from a few years back. As a new father juggling a lot sometimes I need to repurpose old content.Thanks for understanding!

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