I get this idea every now and again. It usually happens whenever I am at a great crossroads. Everybody always wants to have it all in life but the older you get the more impossible this becomes. The reason for this is that as you choose one path, the opposing option becomes unavailable. This isn’t to sound pessimistic but rather stating a simple truth. If you decide to pursue a career in a highly competitive field that demands your attention around the clock, you forgo the life of stay at home mom/dad. If you decide to open a business you forgo the path of traveler.
I think it is necessary to be able to make these decisions in life, but man can it be tough. If you are the type who is locked in analysis paralysis and cannot make these decisions of gravity, then you will find yourself muddled and confused with no clear life path. If you want to always leave your options open thereby committing to nothing, are you really at a gain? I used to believe so. I wanted (and still want) to have it all.
I want to have a large community but also be a world traveler. I want to open and run a business but also have the freedom to leave whenever I wish. I want to have a family but also enjoy the lack of responsibility. Part of me wants a house with tons of pets running around, but contrarily part of me wants to have nothing at all and just wander. All of my life wants begin to seriously conflict with one another.
Something I often think about and wish were possible would be the ability to split time at each great crossroads. I would send one Tyler down the path of entrepreneur and the other down world wanderer. One Tyler would be a family man and a big part of his community while the other would keep his life light and free from responsibility.
I like to also imagine that one day in the distant future, say when we’re all 75 years old, all of these versions of my life would get together and share their experiences with one another. Objectively speaking, which Tyler made the “right” choice? Is that even the proper question to ask? Perhaps it could be better asked who had the most fulfillment in their life? Maybe even that is wrong to ask.
Isn’t life what you make of it? Knowing myself, each and every version of myself would have had the absolute best life. Family Tyler would have so much love in his life and would think of no other possible way to live. To him, the children, grand children, pets, and friends would provide everything he needed.
Entrepreneur Tyler would sit atop his empire and see how he has positively influenced whatever industry he decided to enter. He would be proud that his voice and message impacted so many people.
World Traveler Tyler, with his weathered skin, would smile that deep and thoughtful smile because he truly has seen all there is to see on this planet.
As I am writing this, I am noticing a recurring theme within my life paths. They are all centered around fulfillment. It would appear that no matter what life I choose to live, as long as the focus is on happiness and fulfillment, then I will not have any regrets. It wasn’t always this way though. I used to have several options available to me that would have ultimately led to a life unfulfilled. Needless to say, I have diverged from those ways and the great questions I still face are all geared towards seeking what I need in life.
So friends, in closing, I then have to ask what are your great life questions? If you were able to split time and replicate yourself, where would your paths take you? Perhaps the path you are on is giving you everything you’ve ever wanted in life…or perhaps not. If you were to sit down with the much older and different you’s, what might you discover?