Graduation season is fast approaching. Graduation from pre-school, middle school, high school and college; all individual milestones where we take stock of our past experiences and look forward to the horizon.
Katie Couric has written a new book entitled the Best Advice I Ever Got: Lessons from Extraordinary Lives. In it, you’ll find wonderful nuggets, some fresh, some well known, that help us view our lives in a little different way.
One of those messages is from Condoleezza Rice, Stanford University professor and former Secretary of State. I like her message because it coincides with some of the ideas in my soon to be released book A Working Woman’s GPS: When the Plan to Have it All Has Led You Astray.
Ms. Rice says:
As I traveled the world representing the United States as our nation’s 66th Secretary of State, I was often asked how I came to this post. I would reply, “I started as a failed piano major.” The point is that life is full of surprises and serendipity. Being open to unexpected turns in the road is an important part of success. If you try to plan every step, you may miss those wonderful twists and turns. Just find your next adventure – do it well, enjoy it – and then, not now, think about what comes next.
Imagine viewing the challenges of your life, the disappointments of your life as adventures and as jumping off points for the next great thing? Would that change how you feel about the circumstances you are experiencing right now?
Have you ever been at a point in your life where everything seemed to be in flux? Nothing is calm and everything is changing. You want to scream “stop the world I want to get off!” but you can’t. And so you put one foot in front of the other, trying to “get through” this time.
Well, what if we viewed those stressful times as opportunities for new adventure? Condoleezza’s words inspire me. What do you think? Are we so busy planning every eventuality that we miss the little surprises?
And of course we can’t talk about adventures and travel and chosing a direction without a little Robert Frost and The Road Not Taken:
|TWO roads diverged in a yellow wood,|
|And sorry I could not travel both|
|And be one traveler, long I stood|
|And looked down one as far as I could|
|To where it bent in the undergrowth; click for the rest|