Too many times I hear people setting goals that revolve around avoiding something negative rather than approaching something positive. There is much to be said for the idea that the location of our focus determines that nature of our journey. Consider the following analogy.
If you are running from a bear, the further you get from the bear, the less motivation you have to keep up your speed. When the bear is out of view, you may think that you have lost it and that you no longer need to run. You begin to walk and allow your body to rest. This leisurely pace gradually slows to a stop, as you sit and rest a while. You hear a crack in the bushes next to you and assume that it must be a deer or a squirrel. Then, you are horrified to see the bear emerge from the bushes, running full speed. You freeze. It is too late to begin running again.
If you are running to your home, the closer you get to your home, the more motivation you have to maintain and even increase your speed. When your home is in view, or even around the corner, you will think that you are almost there and that you can’t quit now. You quicken your pace, knowing that your body can give more than it already has, knowing that the limits that are placed on it are a figment of your imagination. This quickened pace gradually leads to a full sprint, as you can almost hear the welcoming cries of your loved ones. You see the door, and know that only a few moments more and you will have reached the safety of home and know that this is what you have wanted more than anything. You are overwhelmed with joy as you see the door open, arms flung open wide to greet you. You rush to embrace them. The bear is an afterthought, because you don’t need to run anymore.
Don’t live your life in an effort to outrun your past but to run towards a future that is new, exciting, and fulfilling.