The Batteries of Life - Do You See Them?
The difference between working towards goals and being stuck focused on what lies ahead is just like flipping a battery around.
The battery provides power.
Both in the moment and for the moments yet to come. We can be prepared for when the battery runs out (hopefully by having a plan to recharge) or by having a new battery to switch to when this battery has served its purpose.
It gives us the power and energy to do something; to complete a goal.
We are fueled by the possibility of accomplishing something, of getting somewhere. The energy comes from within. Energy can be stored. Recharge yourself with thought, relaxation, and restoration. Ideas can be the fuel we hold onto (hence the growing movement back towards writing, journaling, etc.).
Batteries come in all sorts of forms and function.
Think of the normal stuff in life like a AA battery. We don't always have one laying around, but it's easy enough to get a hold of. Some batteries are special purpose, hard to find, but fuel a very unique action. It's the community service project that's hard to get started, but you know is worth it. It's the desire and drive to set off for a full-on career shift. Reaching down deep for the incredible commitment of energy necessary to start a family.
They may be short-lived or long-lived. Rechargeable or single-use.
Think of this as goals vs. plans. Goals are visible on the horizon: saving to buy something, training for a race, a project at work. We can see the whole path in front of us (which we can confuse with knowing exactly how to get there - another post, for another day). We can reach the finish-line and have another go at it. Plans are probably long-term: finishing school, getting a job, having a family, owning your own home, saving for retirement. Sometimes we confuse the two: if we treat a long-term plan like a short term goal, we might assume we have all the answers, have everything in place. The downfall is when we get consumed by obstacles or setbacks. With a long lens, the bigger picture in mind, it's easier to stay on track and not assume these bumps derail our efforts as they might with a singular, short-term goal.
The may provide a lot of power, or just a tiny trickle. Interestingly, this (voltage) is actually called electrical potential.
How much potential do you have? Or better yet, how much potential will you allow yourself to have..? That which you store up can be released in a fantastic burst, or slowly over time. It depends on what your goals or and how your perceive the potential. Fear and negative emotions might push us to release everything at once. There is time, though. True, there are some actual "last chances," but that's no excuse to just throw something at the wall and not devote the proper amount of time and energy - even if, especially if, you might fail in the end.
They can run in series to combine their power, or in parallel to work more or less independently.
Everything can work together; you efforts can be connected with a common purpose. You can choose to work alone, or find others to help. It's up to you. Enough said.
Most important of all, batteries have two terminals of opposite polarity. The battery itself (our goals and challenges in life) is neither positive or negative. We can choose which side to look at.