A road less traveled may seem like a scary choice at first, but sometimes, it can lead us to truly amazing destinations, experiences and opportunities.
We make plans. We set goals. We write lists of things to do, places to go and people to see. We do the things society expects of us: college, jobs, taking care of others.
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
– Robert Frost
But sometimes, we need to take a diversion from the conventional road to success. Following the old, well-worn routes won’t lead us to new destinations, new experiences or new opportunities. Even if it scares us, we need to step out of our comfort zones and take a trip of discovery.
It feels good to feel the wind in our hair on a dusty track where no one has traveled in a long while. When we occasionally break the rules it can bring us back to life. We can discard the shackles of convention and set off on an adventure, and who knows what we might find.
There are many ways to be adventurous. We can choose big adventures such as a round-the-world trip or write our memoir, but small journeys of discovery have much to teach us, too. Breaking with our stale routines could be as simple as taking an afternoon off and spending it alone.
When we travel green lanes and twisting paths we may come across gems of enlightenment. When we take a road less traveled and step off the highway, we discover treasure: a blue jay in flight, a deer leaping, a stream to paddle in, or a shady tree under which to read a sensuous novel. Sometimes, it pays to be a little bit naughty, to play hooky from our everyday lives in order to find a deeper meaning and to reflect on what our lives have come to be.
When we are stuck in a rut, it can take courage to break free and walk a different path, but just a brief interlude can offer us new perspectives to bring back to our world. Our lives can become small and suffocate without us noticing, but going off road can expand them until they are as wide and open as an Arizona sky.
So make a plan for a time when you close the diary and the laptop and leave the workday clothes in the closet. Choose a day to ignore the laundry and the spreadsheets and see what else the world has to offer.
Take a different path, just now and then. It doesn’t have to be a big, grand gesture, but every step on a road less traveled is a potentially life-enhancing moment.