Where did I think I would be today if you asked me five years ago?
I was within a week of moving to New Zealand with my husband at this time five years ago. We had our one-way plane tickets, our one-year visas and a shipment of about a dozen bins full of some of the stuff we wanted to have with us in New Zealand. (Yep, shipping them across the world seemed cheaper than replacing it all when we got here!)
We didn't have jobs, nor had we sorted a place to live or a car to buy. We just knew that we would work these out as we went. Our first week was planned for Auckland so that we could find a car and we had a few nights sorted at an Air BnB in New Plymouth so we had a starting place (and somewhere to ship all the stuff to!)
I don't think we were unprepared or taking a slack approach. We just knew the minimum amount of detail required to get where we were going. A few years of travel leading up to this move definitely taught me that I can't control everything (not like I used to think I could!) so choosing what to sort gave us enough to keep moving but didn't overwhelm us in detail.
Last week I attended the first two days of a year-long Leadership Development program and while we're all trying to define our purpose (the focus of the first days), I was grappling with the fact that I had some guiding principles for mine but I couldn't describe what the details were. I know what I want in a wide sense but I'm not sure exactly how it looks to work my way towards it. I shared this with the facilitator who profoundly asked, "How much detail do you need to start?"
And looking back, there have been some pretty big things in my life where I knew just what I needed to start and the details could be figured out later. I guess for some reason though, without something tangible to work towards I'm not sure of how things will work out along the way. This is no reason not to start.
I often hear people talk about their "five-year-plan" but it's never something I've resonated with because, I don't look that far ahead. I think it's the fact that your life can take so many twists and turns that I don't want to be so focused on a time-based outcome that I don't allow the twists and turns to shape where I'm heading.
So, to answer the question I began with, gosh, I had no idea where I'd be come 2017. I sure would have hoped it would be in New Zealand with my husband but beyond that and working towards making the life that we want - your guess may have been as good as mine. That's not to say we're here without intention, it's more that we didn't know how it would go so rather than forcing something to happen that wasn't meant to be, we kept checking in along the way and kept working on the lives we wanted to have.