livinglifefully.com

December 2
  
It's good to have an end to
journey toward, but it is the
journey that matters in the end.

Ursula K. LeGuin

  

Today's Meditation:

I hear this idea often in different words from different people, and they always strike an important chord.  They always force me to stop for a moment and simply realize that I am on a journey, so that I can then ask myself whether I'm doing anything it ensure that I'm making the most out of the journey, or if I'm so focused on doing that I'm not able to enjoy.

If I'm on a train, do I look out the window and enjoy the view, or strike up a conversation with the person next to me to learn something about another person?  Or do I keep my eyes buried in a newspaper or continue doing work that could be done at another time?  Am I enjoying the trip and making the most of it, or am I getting caught up in the minutiae of planning for the next leg of the trip, and therefore neglecting this leg?

One of the things that I like about being a teacher is that there really is no system of promotions.  If I really wanted to, I could earn more pay as an administrator, but that isn't a necessary step at all.  This lack of needing to try for a promotion helps me to stay focused on the day-to-day reality of my classroom, and I really love that.  It doesn't make me lazy at all--I've earned four graduate degrees--and it does keep me from thinking too much about what I need to do to get promoted (an end), and allows me to stay present with my students and the work that we're doing (the journey).  (Of course, the standardized testing element sabotages this situation, but that's a different story!)

Right now, at this moment, you're on a journey.  Your life is filled with beautiful scenery, cool people, rude people, obstacles, rewards, new experiences, and chances to re-address older experiences.  What are you doing to make sure that when you do reach your goal or aim or end, you'll look back and say, "Boy, what a wonderful journey that was!"?

Questions to consider:

How do we start to get focused on the end rather than the journey?  Does such a focus really help with anything?

What are some of the first steps you can take to make yourself aware of how your journey(s) is/are going at this moment? 

What are some of the possible benefits of trying to improve the quality of your journey?

For further thought:

The end is nothing; the road is all.

Willa Cather

   

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