You cannot change your destination overnight, but you can change your direction overnight.

You cannot change your destination overnight, but you can change your direction overnight. – Jim Rohn

Yep, if you don't like where you are, change direction and start heading somewhere else, right?

Yep, if you don’t like where you are, change direction and start heading somewhere else, right? That’s what the quote is all about.

What does that mean?
This quote is about the power of time. If you’re going in an undesired direction, you’re going to end up where you don’t want to be. While changing where you are isn’t going to be instant, you can change the direction you are moving, and you can do so instantly.

If you don’t like the way your life is headed, can you instantly go somewhere else? Usually the answer is no. However, once you have come to the conclusion that you are headed in the wrong direction, you can change your heading, and steer away from what you don’t want, and towards that which you do want.

Each day, every day, we move in the direction we are headed. If we find ourselves somewhere we decide we don’t want to be, we can change our direction. It will take some time to leave the area and begin to close on our next destination, but where will you end up if you don’t?

Why is plotting your course important?  
It is one thing to know your destination. It’s another thing to know how to get there, much less knowing the best way to get there. How many people want to be rich? How many of them can put an exact amount on what rich is, or do they say a couple million dollars?

That’s their destination, and it’s pretty fuzzy and nebulous, isn’t it? How many ways are there to get to ‘rich’ by that definition? What rules are you willing to bend, as that is usually the quickest and easiest way to get there, if you are willing to risk the consequences, right?

But how detailed is that plan? How well is that going to work? Knowing your next step, and how you will get there is necessary if you ever want to get to your final destination. Knowing what the next couple of steps are helps you plot and plan your course, as well as give you the feedback you need to know if you’re going the correct direction, right?

Where can I apply this in my life?
While we need some flexibility to deal with what life throws at us, we do also need to know where we are going. If you were driving some long distance, you would probably have a very detailed plan of which roads you would take, and when you would stop for meals and fuel.

Now for a different trip metaphor. It has been said that the only two times when an airplane is on course is at takeoff and at landing. Anywhere between those two fixed points, it is off course, even if only by a little. To me, that’s the same with life, except few if any of us know our exact destination.

By that I mean we’re almost always off course to some degree or another. And that’s not counting the times when we change our destination, and have to change our heading to get there, right? Sometimes we decide we want to do something else, other times we realize we were chasing an illusion.

That’s not to say I believe we are just leaves in the wind, but priorities change, and life has a way of getting complicated. We have to keep examining where we’re headed and determine if it’s still the best path forward, or if we need to change direction (again!).

Some people dislike change. To an extent, I am one of them. However, I also realize that the only constant in the world is change. It’s coming whether we want it or not. Sometimes what was once the direct path to your destination changes on you. Or it could be a cross-wind that has blown you off course.

You still have to get to your destination, right? Time to change direction, and the sooner the better. But don’t just change directions at random and expect things to improve. That’s not the way things work. While a random choice can sometimes improve things, it usually does not, right?

So what parts of your life are going in the wrong direction? You may not be able to change where you are in an instant, but you can always go in a different direction, right? Take a moment and consider what parts of your life might need some directional tweaking.

Also consider what that tweak might be. You probably don’t want to spend a great deal of time trying a bunch of different things, only to find one is just as bad as the next. Can you find a friend or a book on that topic, so that your choice of new direction might have a slightly better chance?

We may not be able to instantly change where we are in an instant, but we most certainly change our heading, and start a new journey in a different direction. And we can make that change right now. What are you waiting for?

From: Twitter, @Funny_Instagram
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Photo by wentuq

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3 Responses to You cannot change your destination overnight, but you can change your direction overnight.

  1. Ravi Ramakrishnan 6 April 2014 at 1:36 am #

    Very fine view point. I do believe in this maxim of life. Makes you focus on the coexistence of present life as well the one that is emerging, focused on steering the journey to find the right priorities in life!

    • philosiblog 6 April 2014 at 9:21 pm #

      Thanks for stopping by, and for sharing your thoughts.

      The interesting thing I have found is that over time, our priorities change, and therefore our destination changes. I believe we need to examine our lives regularly to make sure we are still going in the right direction.

      I am glad you found the post to be useful.


  1. From now on everything is different – Creating steps toward your new direction | Creative Collisions MTL - 15 November 2015

    […] starts with one action, a one degree change today. You cannot change your destination overnight but you can change your direction overnight.  This one small degree of movement or action if harnessed and focused can lead to dreams […]

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