We each have a path in life. And I bet, if we all took a look right now, we would be able to have a pretty good guess as to our Probable Future. That is, where would we be 10 years from now, if we didn’t make hard choices?
I have found that kind of thinking helps me make those hard choices. It doesn’t take too much imagination to think, “ok, what if I did the easy thing here?” Take it to the extreme.
In early 2009, when I thought about this, this exercise led me down a path where I saw myself in 2019: living in the DC suburbs, in a relationship that was okay but not great, with kids, working in a senior retail management position. That scared the crap out of me. I did not want to be known for retail (even at a phenomenal organization), I realized I was done with that relationship, and also DC.
By the fall of 2009, I was long out of that relationship, had moved to Boston, and had quit retail and moved with no job, because I’m crazy and wanted to be able to explore.
I feel like following current paths to their extreme ends helps put things in perspective: Do I like where I see myself (emotionally, geographically, career-wise) in ten years? What would I change? What experiences would I have wanted to have between now and 10 years from now?