Important Questions As You Look To The Future
I was recently invited to speak at a college commencement, where I asked the audience to consider three pivotal questions: what does the future hold, what do you want from it, and how do you get it? Those are daunting questions—but I promised to provide the correct answers because I consulted a “fortune teller!” Not the kind who wears a turban and gazes into a crystal ball, but one of those paper devices we made in grade school where you would put your fingers inside to move it back and forth for your prediction. It would tell you who you were going to marry, what car you would drive, what you would be when you grew up, and where you would live. Obviously, vital information when you are still in grade school!
What The Future Holds For You
It is probably no surprise, but the fortune teller’s forecast for my life could not have been more wrong. I am not playing in the NFL, living in Hawaii, or driving a Mustang; but the fortune teller did ultimately teach me how to read the future—for me, for those students, and for you. Here goes: the future will be unlike anything you ever imagined, because it is filled with variables you cannot control. In other words, your future consists of constant changes, and if you don’t learn to manage them effectively—you will have difficulties. I challenge you to print this article and pin it on the wall where you might see it in a few years. I bet you will look back from that vantage point and realize I was right about your future—it involved changes you never expected.
What You Really Want From Your Future
I know it seems bold to suggest I not only know someone’s future but also know what they want from their future—but keep in mind, I consulted the fortune teller. You see, deep inside that paper device when you opened up the last flaps, there was one question of supreme importance: would you be “happy or sad”? Even a grade school kid knows that was all that mattered. What good is having everything you want without happiness? So, that’s the answer to what you want from your future—it’s happiness (contentment or a sense of well-being)—it’s what we all want. Which means the last question is the most important of all: how do we get it?
How You Can Get What You Want
If our futures are filled with unexpected changes and we want to be happy, there’s only one way to achieve that goal: learn to develop something called resilience, which is the ability to adapt and stay positive. In our training called Developing Resilience, we tell participants it’s not the events in our future that matter, because we can’t control what happens to us. The key is how we process those events, because we do have control over how we respond and how we frame things. If you want 2020 to be the best year yet, remember the unexpected is in the forecast; and if happiness is important to you—it’s all about maintaining a healthy perspective.