Monday Musings – The Road Less Traveled

The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost

 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;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I –
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

Have you ever reached a point, or several points in your life where a crossroads approaches and you question which road to take? You waffle between the two, debating the pros and cons, the grassy path or the pebble strewn road. As my grandfather would say, “Pick one and wish you picked the other!” Do you find that the crossroads seem to appear frequently in your life? Is this caused by always needing or wanting change, dissatisfaction with your current status in life, or is it truly an honest moment when the path appears? My life has never wandered the straight and narrow, much to the dismay of my parents. I don’t regret any of the paths I have chosen in life for it adds to who I am today. Yet, it seems I’m again at a crossroads. Which path should I take?

Maybe it is not so much that a crossroad always appears, but that I want to do and see and accomplish so much! I’ve never believed that a person should settle for things in life and believe that is how it should be, but to embrace life with gusto and verve, pursuing their dreams. Regardless of whether the initial dream is reached or not, it is the journey to that dream that provides the life-fulfilling and life-sustaining purpose. Sometimes, the journey IS the dream and not the end result. A plaque that I read and bought recently which now hangs over my living room doorway reads, “Happiness is a journey, not a destination.” I truly believe this with all my heart. It is about taking hold of what life has to offer and exploring it to its fullest potential. Live life with abandon, as though you will never live another day. Why put off until tomorrow, what you can do today?

I’m a notorious procrastinator. Unfortunately, it has become somewhat of a hallmark for me. Despite the fact that I accomplish my goals and achievements on time (for the most part) and achieve them well, I create needless stress and worry because I continually push things off until the last possible moment. Now mind you, I’m referring more to responsibilities and assignments. I have always been a person where if I’m given a choice between play or work, I will ALWAYS choose play! Life is too short to bog myself down in work. Where is the joy in that? This is all part of the life philosophy of living in the small moments, the present, here and now. I’m not saying it is foolish to not plan for the future at all. There are wise decisions to make that would better your future such as retirement investments and so forth. It is important to work on those things. There are also responsibilities we have that come with daily living. I’m not saying to shirk those either and become irresponsible.  What I DO suggest is that you do not let yourself become hindered, immobile, and mired in these swampy moments, but to do the necessities, and then LET GO. What is more important?

The crossroads in my life right now can take me down a variety of paths, but each one achieves the same goal – fulfilling my life with a career I love and want to do every day. Maybe I’ll do all of them. Maybe I’ll do some or only one of them. Either way, the happiness will be found on the journey and not in the end result. For what’s life if not a constant journey?

~ Kat

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