Did you ever consider how important it is to be moving forward, to be making progress? It just occurred to me this past week how powerfully we are impacted by whether or not we feel that our lives are moving forward. My wife Tee, not normally a moody person, had been feeling some frustration recently about being stuck in some circumstances beyond her control. Then over the weekend we received a contract on our house which has been on the market for several weeks. Suddenly and dramatically everything about her changed as if all at once she felt unstuck and was moving forward again.
So often we fail to realize that moving forward is much more important than hitting homeruns, although homeruns are a nice bonus from time to time. But mostly life is about hitting singles, advancing from one base to the next, than it is knocking it out of the park. It is about knowing that somehow, someway we are moving forward.
The great twentieth century philosopher, Dr. Seuss, expressed it this way: “Oh! The Places You’ll Go!” he exclaimed. “You’re off to Great Places! You’re off and away! . . . Except when you don’t. Because, sometimes, you won’t. I’m sorry to say so but, sadly, it’s true that Bang-ups and Hang-ups can happen to you. . . . You can get all hung up in a prickle-ly perch. And your gang will fly on. You’ll be left in a Lurch. . . . [Then you find yourself in] The Waiting Place . . . for people just waiting. [But] No! That’s not for you! Somehow you’ll escape all that waiting and staying. . . Oh, the places you’ll go! . . . And will you succeed? Yes! You will, indeed! (98 and 3/4 percent guaranteed.)
I still say hurray for homeruns, big successes and great accomplishments. We need them from time to time. But real happiness and fulfillment is not so much about that as it is moving forward, and moving forward is an attitude more than it is an activity, a state of mind even when we are stuck or waiting. Then we begin to recognize delays and setbacks for what they really are – part of the process of moving forward. And when you move forward you will succeed, “98 and 3/4 percent guaranteed”.