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Shortcuts

1 Feb

When we’re going places and we want to save time, sometimes we try shortcuts we think will help. They might help us avoid traffic, or cut the distance down to get us to our destination more quickly. They’re great when they work, but sometimes the shortcuts become complications instead. When that happens it’s frustrating and can cost us more time than the direct route would have. Our brilliant shortcut can turn into a headache. Our lives are like that sometimes. We know where we want to go and we have the road mapped out but then think we can find a way to cut some of the time out by eliminating a step or two, or going a different way. Sometimes it works, but many times it ends up costing us more time and aggravation than we planned on. It’s like get rich schemes. They look good at first and we get excited thinking about how quickly they’ll get us what we want, but often they end up costing us more time and money in the long run. We can’t see that going in, and unless we stop to think about what will happen if we don’t get rich quick, we can lose more than we bargained for.

Every destination has a road leading to it. We can go anywhere we want to go and sometimes we go on long journeys that take a lot of time and commitment. But the most important things we want to accomplish in our lives rarely come quickly. They take effort, planning, and diligence. We have to be willing to stay true when the inevitable complications come, and be strong enough to keep going. If we want the goal badly enough, nothing will take us from our course. But we might be distracted by a shortcut. For instance, we might think we don’t have to finish a degree to get that job, and try to learn the skills needed more quickly in another way. Or maybe we think we don’t have to earn a promotion by working hard for the next year, and instead try to befriend those in position to grant it. There are all kinds of scenarios we can think up. But in reality, short cuts for what we really want rarely work. Additionally, they take our focus off the plans we’ve already made. If we get distracted trying a different route, we can’t go further down the road that’s proven to get us there.

It takes patience to accomplish big goals. We can’t expect to achieve anything of value overnight. There are no get rich schemes that always work. If we really want something and there is a proven and sure way to get to it, even if it takes time, it’s worth the investment. We can spend our lives like bees in a field of flowers, flitting from one idea to the next, one path to another, and continually try to cut corners and find shortcuts. If we do, we may find precious time goes by and we have moved no closer to the goal. However, if we focus on one road, and keep our eyes trained on the destination we will succeed. It’s like the old story of the tortoise and the hare and the race they ran against each other.  As you may recall when the race began the hare took off and rocketed ahead, while the tortoise slowly began plodding along toward the finish line. The hare got distracted running here and there and jumping all over, and was way faster than the tortoise, but the tortoise never left the path to the destination. He slowly continued forward never taking his eyes from the goal. And we all know that’s exactly how he won. That’s how we’ll win too. We don’t need a shortcut to succeed. If we set the goal, make a plan, and diligently keep to the road that will take us there, we will not fail.

Today if you’ve got a goal in sight and are considering changing your plan and trying a shortcut, make sure it’s something that will continue to move you forward. There is no rush, and you can take the time you need to achieve whatever you want. There is nothing that will stop you if you keep your eyes on the goal. Keep moving forward. You will be successful and every moment you invest in gaining that success will be well spent.

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