What I Learned On Instagram On Sunday Afternoon

July 16, 2012

Recently while zooming through pictures on Instagram, I stumbled across a series of photos taken by someone somewhere amazing.

photo by davidg

There were snow-capped mountains with the sky big and blue. It looked wild and beyond beautiful.

The comments were many and varied, but said things like, “I wish I was there,” and “Oh, you’re so lucky.”

I was struck by the words in the comments. How stuck and discouraged they sounded. I could hear longing in the words typed and could almost view the distant dreamy eyes of the person on the other side.

I am convinced we box ourselves in by life. We view others as getting a lucky break and we just have to keep plugging along. We let life and its circumstances rule and run our lives instead of ruling and running our circumstances.

We forget that we are in control of where we end up. If you want it to be in the mountains, than make it happen!

We are never stuck!

The typical American story goes: college, apartment, marriage, cars, house, dog, kids, 20-30 years of putting in time at a mundane job with a couple of weeks of summer vacation smattered in, retirement, and grandkids.

Some people like and want that. This post is for the people who don’t. 

The problem lies in the fact that most people don’t have a plan for their lives and end up getting distracted by shiny objects. These can look different for different people but they are anything that pulls us further from our intended goal instead of bringing us closer.

Life is tricky. It twists and winds. It blows hard and threatens to topple. It ripples and rocks and shakes and squeezes. It is loud and distracting. It drips like a leaky faucet.

photo by eflon

Unless we know where we are going, life will toss us by the wayside, trample on us like a horse in full gallop, and continue on its merry way leaving us crushed, lost, and bewildered.

“Living life in an improvisational manner is a disaster waiting to happen” – Andy Andrews

The Instagram photo reminded me we have control of where we end up. Dreams are in us for a reason, and if we want to do something, we can find ways to make it happen.

Question: Where do you want to end up in life? Are you on track to get there?

You Might Also Like

  • Michael Wright July 16, 2012 at 3:07 am

    Thought provoking as always and pressing in on me – good!   I have a long term personal vision to influence my family and community, but to really put something down in terms of a goal would be better.  You can’t measure what you don’t track, ya know?   Do you and Michael have established long term goals?  5, 10, 15 years, etc…..

    • Michael Good July 16, 2012 at 11:53 am

      Hey Michael, 

      I know, this post challenges me too! You’re right, I think it makes such a difference to have specific, quantifiable goals. 

      The challenge is, it’s difficult to do that with long term goals! Well, maybe it’s not that difficult to set them, but then you have to see how you’re going to get there. 

      We have 2 and 5 year goals and some 10 year goals too. I think for us, the longer range goals more point us in a direction. I think it helps us be more intentional about the decisions we make now because we know what direction we want to be headed in. 

      For me, it helps to think about what I want my life to look like 10 years down the road. So, I’m 31 now, what do I want my life to look like when I’m 41? How many kids, what am I doing for work, where do we live, and how will I be influencing my family and community, to use your phrase? And so on.

      Great question!

    • Claudia Good July 16, 2012 at 10:14 pm

      Thank you Michael!
      You just put together a pretty sweet sentence there my friend! “You can’t measure what you don’t track, ya know?” So very true, and a wonderful place to be!
      Welcome to a new future 🙂

      Yeah, we do have long term goals… it looks like Michael explained them a little so I won’t go into much detail, but it has completely changed the landscape of our lives in a years time (We started goal setting a year ago.)

      Simply put… setting goals gave us the wings we were always looking for but could never find 😉

      Best to you and your lovely fam as you journey down this road as well!

  • Joe Lalonde July 16, 2012 at 6:15 am

    Wow, you hit on something important in this post Claudia. I haven’t been able to completely change the way I think about this topic but I’m changing for the better. I’m beginning to realize I have a lot more control over where I end up than I thought I did. 

    • Claudia Good July 16, 2012 at 10:16 pm

      That is awesome Joe! Excited to see where your dreams do take you! 🙂

  • Ann Musico July 16, 2012 at 7:51 am

    There you go again Claudia!!  Stretching me!  Unless we intentionally move toward something specific you are so right – and I love how you put it – we are distracted by shiny objects!  The urgent overtakes the truly important and then we can wonder how we got where we ended up!  I don’t want that to happen and I am working toward my goals.  Sometimes it seems it’s one step forward and 2 (or 3!) backward – but in the end I am moving in the direction of the dreams God has placed in my heart.

    • Claudia Good July 16, 2012 at 10:20 pm

      Hahahah Ann,
      Thanks for your ever flowing source of encouragement. It is water to a thirsty heart ;)That was  a beautiful paragraph that you wrote there! You are moving IN A DIRECTION… that in itself is huge!

      Blessings as you continue to sort through, clarify and pursue what God has buried deep inside you!

  • Cindy Hirch July 16, 2012 at 10:55 am

    Great post Claudia! We never fully “arrive” at our destination because the journey is a continual move forward. It is a series of ups and downs and steps forward and sometimes backward to make course corrections. Sometimes we are stuck and need a fire to be lit under us to get us going again. I never want to be caught in an idol state and not pursuing the dreams that have been planted inside of me.

    • Michael Good July 16, 2012 at 11:55 am


      That’s a great thing to point out. It’s a process, a journey. You’re right on!

    • Claudia Good July 16, 2012 at 10:22 pm

      Thanks Cindy!
      You are sweet and you bring up a vital point. It is a continual move forward. Looking, moving, turning, jumping sometimes crawling… but ever forward. 🙂