Aim for the Horizon, Pick out an Island

BP Media Blog Horizon

Ever have a phrase or thought roll around in your gourd for a week before you realize its significance?

Our local Entrepreneurial Guru Trevor Mauch dropped this seed in my brain at the most recent YES Meeting and only recently did I realize how much genius it contains. I have been sharing it often with people, always giving credit to Trevor as the source.

It goes something like this:

When you set goals for yourself in a given month or year, it is easy to cast your vision on the horizon and begin working toward that destination. But there is a problem with that. The horizon is a mirage. You can never reach the horizon because it always moves farther away.

When you get to the end of the month or year and compare your results to the goal you had set, you will have fallen short of the proverbial horizon. Mostly because it was an impossible goal in the first place.

The bummer about such a trap is that you may have done very well and exceeded expectations during that time span, but end up unhappy because 'what might have been' is still on your mind.

It is better to choose an island. Pick an attainable target. It can still be in the distance and it might be large, but at least it is stationary. You are not guaranteed to reach the smaller goal. Sometimes outside forces prevent you from reaching the island or the path you wind up taking is longer and more difficult than you thought. But with persistence and effort, reaching an island is more realistic than chasing the horizon.

One more thing. When you reach an island, celebrate it! Remember what it took to get there. Look around and enjoy the win. Then, look ahead and pick another goal in the distance, prepare yourself and launch out again.

This word picture also plays into another nugget of wisdom I have learned. Some people are frozen by the thought of the horizon and never set out on a path. They over-think and over-analyze and over-plan. Fear wins and they stay where they have always been.

Some people can plan their launch and others get launched against their will. Once you're out there, it's nice to bump into someone willing to share their wisdom and celebrate with you when you hit the beach.