Thoughts on commitment and the belief in “impossibility”

“He who observes the wind will not sow, and he who regards the clouds will not reap.” -Ecclesiastes 11:4

This weekend, my wife and I went to New Mexico to attend my brother’s wedding. I’m writing this post on my android as we sit in the hotel lobby preparing to embark on our 15 hour road trip back home.

What amazes me most about this trip is that it actually happened.

Given the nature of our work schedules, our traveling budget, and other external obligations, this trip was not supposed to be possible. We simply didn’t have the money or time to make it happen and, yet, it happened.

We experienced a bit of stress here and there, but we figured out a way to be there and we have no regrets at all. The wedding, the reception, the family time, and the road trip all combined to make one of the most meaningful and rich experiences we’ve all had in a very long time.

After some reflection on this weekend’s events and the creative maneuvering required to pull it all off, I now propose the following hypothesis:

There is never enough time, money, or opportunity to do the really important things in life. The people who do the things that are important to them, are simply the ones who decide that it’s not an option to leave them undone.

Important things don’t happen when we only do things on a “let’s see what happens” basis. Important things happen when we commit.

Impossible things get done all the time. Parents are proof of this; they perform dozens of tasks on a daily basis that they “knew” were impossible when they didn’t have children. Why? Because the voice that says “it has to be done” is louder than the voice that says “I have 100 reasons for why this is impossible.”

I met a woman at my college graduation who was a single mother with 5 kids and two jobs. She was there to receive her PhD. It took her 6 years. That’s the same amount of time it took me to finish undergraduate school.

She did what was important to her because her mind accepted those results as necessary.

When we say “it’s impossible” or “I can’t do it”, is that our way of saying “I don’t think it’s necessary” or “I’m not willing to commit”?

Are we selling ourselves short when we let a lack of time, money, or opportunity keep of us from seeing the people we love, doing the things we love, and pursuing the dreams we love?

Is it possible that there are resources, ideas, and options that only become apparent to us AFTER we’ve made firm decisions to go after the things that really matter to us?

What if the permission to live as we truly wish to live is the effect, not the cause, of commitment?

What are your thoughts?

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