1. to follow a winding course
2. to wander without definite aim or direction
Sometimes people have misconceptions about living at The Intersection of Purpose & Now.
They believe it will be restrictive. They think they might get trapped by their own plans. Having a definite aim and direction might keep them from new, as yet undiscovered opportunities.
They fear that living a value-driven, goal-directed, On-Purpose life leaves no room for spontaneity. I have found just the opposite to be true.
Living On Purpose actually creates more opportunity for innovation, spontaneity, fulfillment and just plain fun…if you take time to meander.
I have been traveling a great deal lately, putting miles and miles behind the wheel of my Volvo XC70. The purpose of my travel has included business, family and other personal goals. Being on the road has taken me closer to some goals, yet it has also limited opportunities for some other things that are important to me, no doubt. Travel has kept me from my own bed, my own pillow, home-cooked meals and my wife and three sons, all of which I longed for after 10 days of travel with only three nights at home.
My travel schedule has created opportunities as well. For one, I am making money to pay for the expensive hockey gear that keeps my sons happy and fully engaged in life! I am present and supporting them as they play hockey. I am helping a friend expand and achieve his life’s mission. I am developing leaders within my client organizations. I am On Purpose when I travel.
One of my clients recently informed me that two small towns within my current travel path now have Thai restaurants. Thai food is by far my favorite cuisine and a key element of my “Ideal Day”, which includes the goal of having least one Thai food meal (lunch or dinner). I even reworked my business marketing plan three years ago so that I could do more business in the two communities in which my favorite Thai food restaurants are located: Thara Thai in Champaign, IL, and the Magic Kitchen in Springfield, IL. As a result, my business has grown and I am having many more Ideal Days!
On one leg of my journey late last week, I had plenty of time to meet my goal of getting home by 7:30 p.m. without hurry, so I took time to meander. I drove down roads that allowed me to see parts of the country that I’ve never seen before. I was pleased to discover most “country” roads were in much better shape, after a harsh winter, than the major highways. And I never grow tired of the panorama of rolling prairies in my home state, even in the dead of winter.
My purpose was clear – I wanted to get home. But I also needed to eat before I got home. The convergence of these two desires, plus my ongoing desire to have an Ideal Day, led me to the Thai Noodle in Mattoon, Illinois. I had Tom Yum soup and made a new friend. The owner happens to be friends of the owner of Thara Thai, my favorite, and informed that another new Thai restaurant has opened in Effingham, IL, which is also on my map of travels in coming weeks. I will be meandering on another Ideal Day soon.
Take time to meander. It’s nearly always rewarding. Meanders mustn’t always take you off-purpose, even if they take you off your most direct course. You might just love the drive, enjoy the scenic view, savor the food, and surely appreciate the good company you find along the way while Living On Purpose.