Happiness is a journey, not a destination – Souza

(I know that some people say that the use of quotes is for those who can’t write themselves. I can live with that. Yes, I use quotes to say something I haven’t found the words to say, but writing is a journey, not a destination, so I’ll take the help.)

Right now, I’m definitely on a journey. The 50 year journey – or rather “the year I turn 50” journey. One big focus is increasing and diversifying physical activity.

I recently went cycling, training for a 200 km ride next June. As I rode, I kept the hardest part of the ride in my mind, working towards it. I needed to know what lay ahead. As I rode up the killer hill, I talked to myself. Constantly. And when I got to the top, well, I was proud of what I had done. I still had half the ride left to do, but it was that hill that provided the greatest challenge. It was a big part of the journey, but not the destination.

In the fall, I’m going to be walking a half marathon. The route is in another town, nowhere near where we live, so training there is not going to happen. Yet, I found a way to drive the route on my way to a weekend away. That way, I can visualize what is coming ahead. I can enjoy the journey, not worrying about the destination.

My biggest challenge to date has been hiking up a ski hill to 3000 feet above the parking lot where we left our car. I had company on this adventure and I can safely say I was not the easiest hiking partner. I kept asking, what’s next? When do we get to the hardest part? What does the next hardest part look like? I wanted to lay out the journey, ensuring I got to the destination.

When I got to the top, I truly felt like I’d done something. Something hard.

I have lived my life without usually making a plan and often I quit before I got to the desired destination. This may have had something to do with being thrown by not knowing what is ahead. The journey has become the important part, the part that allows me to get to the destination.