The path is never quite straight, which as it turns out, makes the journey that much more exciting!

Why does the path we end up on always seem to go in directions we don’t expect? Why do we find ourselves off course from the simple plans we seem to make?

Tumalo creek meandering through the countryside in Central Oregon

Tumalo creek meandering through the countryside in Central Oregon

I’m the kind of guy that likes to make long term plans. In fact, my wife Alice and I do some pretty serious planning together every six months. We have done this for the last 20 years of our marriage, it’s been a powerful exercise for sure, and has taught me a few interesting things. 

First of all, planning is essential. It just is, there is something compelling about a spending time looking at the past, thinking through lessons learned, and planning for the future. If you’re not doing something like this regularly, you need to start literally today, just do it, you’ll not regret it.

Secondly, I have found that life rarely plays out in an exact way envisioned in the plan. It just seems to be a lot more “curvy.” The path one finds themselves on in the real world is never straight, never what’s expected, and always ends up being a path of rough terrain full of switchbacks, obstacles, and distractions. 

Why even spend time planning? Why even make an effort. 

It’s been said fail to plan and you're planning on failure. 

I love that, so true, I’ve lived it. 

The purpose of the plan is not to unroll the future script of exactly how things are going to be. It’s more about thinking through and trying to understand future decisions you’re gonna be faced with. This exercise is critical even if it doesn’t every play out how you envision it because it gives you the opportunity to think through the who what when and where before you’re faced with the stress and pressure if actually being in that situation. 

Here’s the thing, as time unfolds and you realize that you’re just simply not the “straight roads” you envisioned, you can’t get discouraged, you can’t abandon the goal, you can’t leave the scenarios behind. 

Things will never go smoothly, they’ll never go how you envisioned them. What are you gonna do sit and cry about it, or get up and keep pushing? Yea, it’s not all easy, but sometimes the best parts of the journey are the unexpected, unplanned parts. 

Enjoy the ride, enjoy the journey!

Onward,
 
Chris Behnke
  
Inspiration from the Instagram post: https://www.instagram.com/p/BPhWqZEAncc/?taken-by=chrisbehnke
 
The path is never quite straight, which as it turns out, makes the journey that much more exciting!

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