Very few things happen at the right time

On Friday, as I was clearing my desk at work in preparation for an office move, I found this old metro card.

I really like the quote. Excuses for delayed trains aside, it’s a good reminder that life never goes exactly as planned. It reminds me of the famous John Lennon song lyric, “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.”

It’s true. Life keeps on keeping on and is filled with distractions. Somehow my plan to write two blog posts per week got ambushed. I’m not quite sure why. I kept thinking about writing and still have plenty of ideas but I wasn’t driven enough to prioritize my blog over other things. Although goals are a great motivation and can give us a sense of achievement and direction, nothing ever runs smoothly and they often have to be altered. We are constantly derailed and challenged in life and I believe it’s more important to accept changes and learn to adapt rather than focusing on a rigid path.

I recently read this blog post: the best goal is no goal about living without set goals and opening your mind to new ideas. It seems weird in our competitive culture of SMART objectives, where we are judged on perceived achievements, to even consider not setting goals. But in many ways it makes sense. You can’t predict the weather, or the stock market, or what other people will think or do. So why try to predict and plan your life when there are so many impacting factors that you can’t control. While I don’t think that a life without goals suits everyone, I do believe we should be open to exploring each opportunity that arises and follow our passions rather than those around us. I’m finally writing a new blog post, not because it was on my to do list, but because I was inspired and started writing.

What do you think… should we live by goals and plans or completely free, guided by instinct and passion? Is there a healthy balance?

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