When Tomorrow Looks the Same as Yesterday
I was having a conversation recently with a young man who was struggling to find direction for his life. He has some good things going for him; he owns a home at a very young age, he has a good job that pays him well, and he has friends and family who love him. For him though, something is still missing. There in contains a void and a desire for change. To the casual observer, he seems well-rounded, successful, and headed in the right direction, but for him, there is no joy, no satisfaction. So he is constantly questioning his real purpose. He is doing what is expected of him, but he doesn’t dare to do what he truly wants; that would require going in a different direction than the one he is on. He feels stuck on a carousel going round and round in circles but ultimately going nowhere.
For many of us, the story is the same. We get up and go do what’s expected of us, what’s required to live, or perhaps we do nothing because we’re bound by fears of our own making.
My question is are we really living?
I’ve had times, and I’m sure many of you have as well, where the joy of living just wasn’t there. We’re either stuck in the mud of our past, holding on to yesterday like somehow it is gonna be our tomorrow, or refusing to believe that tomorrow will be any different from today.
The other thing that doesn’t get enough attention is the fact that a whole lot of us can’t move past our present, our current situation, our today. Most people say “don’t live in the future, because no one knows what tomorrow holds” and there is a lot of truth in that. BUT repeating today over and over again is, in a way, living in the past. We never move past today, so tomorrow ends up looking the same as yesterday. Before you know it, life has passed by with no real change or forward motion other than time.
So many people are paralyzed by fear – fear of failure or fear that a new way won’t bring the satisfaction we’re looking for. Many fear success; it terrifies some worse than failure. Some, in their clogged up thinking, see success in a much darker way than failure or even status quo. For those, failure just confirms our belief that we were no good in the first place, and with the status quo at least we know where we stand. Success, though, could bring real change, so we end up self-sabotaging – not because we don’t think we can make it, but because we don’t think we’re really up for the change and responsibilities to come.
I believe we have to make up our minds that we’re gonna be brave, we’re gonna step off the carousel we’ve been riding, and follow a different path, a actual path forward away from the circling. We must move beyond yesterday, while fully living today, but completely expecting tomorrow to be different and better than each day before. We can’t go back, and we can’t stay where we are. Moving forward into the known and the unknown is the only way that real change occurs. We can’t keep doing the same thing and expecting a different result. We all know that’s the definition of insanity. In order to be sane, we must be courageous enough to try something different, to step out.
Do it afraid. Do what’s in your heart to do. Live life forward. Fail forward. Succeed forward. Just Keep Moving Forward. I believe that if we do, we’ll find what we’re looking for.
In the end that’s the advice I gave the young man, and I believe it to be true. Hopefully he heeds the advice and leaves yesterday behind, lives today well, and moves forward into a bright and joyful tomorrow.