An influential Italian philosopher Thomas Aquinas once said: «If the highest aim of the captain were to preserve his ship, he would leave it in port forever.» So, is it sailing or harboring we are striving for? It depends. Usually, it’s a little bit of both. They say that sailors miss land while in the open sea and then miss the open sea the very moment their feet touch the solid ground. We all can relate. We long for a lost paradise & try to recreate it with all our might, but once succeeded, we become bored & that boredom pushes us out to seek yet another better place for our own new “paradise.”
Enjoying a safe, beautiful harbor is not hard to imagine. We can picture in great detail how a successful destination might look for us, which is totally fine. We need end goals. Our own well-crafted Happily-ever-afters. They definitely should fuel our desire to succeed. It feels so good when we reach those goals. Like finally holding that Green Cardboard from Staples, symbolizing us finally getting our Green Cards. For my husband & I, that was a well-worth end goal towards which we kept inching for several long years. We endured different kinds of stormy weather & now, the sun was shining bright right on us! Oh, that wonderful feeling of success, however long it may continue before it … starts to fade away, and a “Now What?!” sign is printed on top of that very Cardboard. Sounds familiar?
Some educational psychologists suggest that people learn & grow only through hardships while in the warm & carefree atmosphere, they first freeze & then start to degrade. Ouch! It implies that to be always successful, we must keep moving. Ok, ok. With some short & restful stops in between. Yes, that’s right! As upside down as it may seem, we have to adopt that way of thinking that it’s not the sailing, but rather the harboring is actually in-between. Now, if that is the case, then it is vital for us to learn how to enjoy sailing, which means: uncertainty, headwinds, and even, oh what a horror, decuman waves! Then, we can safely declare that we have finally tackled the secret of successful life navigation.