We spent too much valuable time travelling through Nextyearland. Nextyearland is that frame of mind in which we promise ourselves a better, brighter, more fulfilling life if only some or other occurrence we’re always dreaming about takes place. When, next year, I move to that modern apartment, or bigger house, I’ll really start enjoying life, we say. When, next year, I’ve lost 20 kgs, things will be different. When I land the new car, new job, when I give up smoking, when I start jogging again, that’s when it’s all going to happen.
The problems exist for those who focus too much on Nextyearland. Firstly, it might not happen. The future is not ours to control. That thing we’ve been dreaming about, hoping for, building our plans on, might never materialize. What then?
Secondly, and even more importantly, we might find ourselves in the same situation as the long distance traveler whose eyes are so fixed on the town on the horizon, that he doesn’t even see the beautiful scenery through which he is passing. While we’re telling ourselves about next year, friendship and opportunities and moments of beauty that are happening, right now around us, pass us by.
That’s a loss that can’t always be recovered.
Here, then, is a word of advice. Don’t be dazzled too much by the things in Nextyearland, however glittering they seem. Sure, make the plans, but file them away in one of the corridors of your mind, and don’t allow them to become an excuse for refraining from living, right now, with a 100% engagement, enjoyment, fulfillment.
The next year ship may never arrive. But you do have today. That is a gift worth having.