If there are only so many hours in a day, then choices need to be made about the most effective way to use them. The choices we make may not always make sense to others around us, but ideally they should be ours to make. When we encounter folks we knew at different points on our journeys, sometimes we pause to reflect about what our choices say, regarding what we’ve managed to achieve, given the personal attributes each of us might have.
If one is lucky, then one would have come across friends and associates who encourage us to follow our natural callings. It is impressive to see people who are truly fulfilled in their lives. In many cases we aspire towards particular goals because we have been influenced by our peers, mentors and their values. A lot of energy can be invested in travelling down a particular path, only for the traveller to realise that reaching the destination hasn’t given them the things they need from life.
It shouldn’t be too late to change direction if necessary, but then of course the traveller would have formed habits based on requirements of his or her chosen journey. Sometimes it takes a lot of effort to wean one’s self off those habits.
In other cases, perhaps we have to learn about travelling alone. It has been said many times and in many ways, that being alone is different from being lonely. But if there are no associates or friends who really understand what one’s calling is, should one settle for a less than fulfilling life, just to be surrounded by others?
Listening to one’s inner voice is a precious skill that should be nurtured as much as possible. It might seem banal to suggest that doing so can save a lot of time and energy, but perhaps there is a difference between understanding this basic point on a superficial level and really knowing what it entails to go with the flow in this way.