Now vs. Later


We recently went through a merger at the day job. As with most integrations, a lot (read way too much) time was spent nurturing cultural meshing and harmony. There have been a series of mandatory and voluntary conference calls and trainings with all hands on deck. A generous heapful of "we're all in this together and aren't we happy" has been served up time and again. Granted, this ain't my first rodeo and I've seen these pony rides before but I'm always amazed at what passes for motivational team-building.

I vividly recall my time at Kodak where they shipped twenty of us off to the wilderness to a "bonding camp" and expected us to climb trees, walk ten foot high tightropes and sing along to "Broken Wings" which was our "mediation song" for the weekend. Booo. After the unfortunate incident where one person didn't get caught in the backwards trust fall - that wrapped up the formal bonding. They handed out free booze and let us chill by the fireplace - that was a true bonding experience. 

Last week we had the last two "togetherness talks" which struck me in their complete divergence from each other. The first was calling "Learning to Live in the Now" which as you may imagine delved into Oprahesque ways to be the best you that you can be right now IN THE MOMENT. (Yes, all caps on the presentation) Two days later, they gave a presentation on "Life in the Long Term" which focused on what you can do today so your tomorrows are all pretty.

Besides irritating me with the overly simplistic advice, the two topics got me to thinking. Am I more of a "live for today" or a "plan for tomorrow" person? I think the answer is that I've evolved into both. Someone who wants to enjoy the here and now while laying out the stepping stones for tomorrow and the time after that. I think as you get older, you get a little more aware that your tomorrows aren't promised and are shrinking even as I type but you want to hedge your bets and make plans just in case you're blessed enough to still be around.

With my career it's different. The HR is a means to an end. That end being the day when I can write full-time again. And writing is something I plan to do until my fingers can no longer reach the keyboard and that speech-to-text app quits working. It's easy to stay focused on the next book, next deadline, next publicity tour while planning two or three books ahead.

In my personal life, well that's more complicated. Long term seems so... long term. Trying to guess what will happen on down the road, particularly with my relationship history is either foolhardy or brave. So I tend to be a bit more in the here and now. 

Quite the balancing act - staying in the moment with one eye on the future. Hopefully I do a better job with this than I did on that tightrope. I think I've mentioned before that I don't defy gravity well? Yeah um... picture me in bright yellow workout gear (I don't know what I was thinking) shrieking at the top of my lungs as I fell off the rope and the support harness swung me around to drop in the net. Never. Again.

BougieLand - are you more or a "live for the moment" or a "my day will come" person? And how's that working for you? Can you live life to the fullest if you're always plotting the next step? Can you get to the next step if you are completely immersed in the moment? (Has anyone else been on one these work wildnerness things - why do they do this?) Please share...