“Shoot for the stars and hopefully you’ll land on the moon.”
Ever hear that saying? It sounds like it’s full of possibilities.
It sounds like even failure is a win.
“Aim for the stars! If that doesn’t work, you’ll have made it to the moon. How cool is that?”
And if you never truly believed the stars or the moon were possible for you, then even this advice sounds really ambitious.
But what happens when you land on the moon when you really wanted the stars?
Let me tell you.
You get praised for being on the moon! Which, even if only for a moment, feels great!
People are so impressed with you. “You made it to the moon! How many people can say that? I always knew you could do it! Look at you!”
You might even eat that up for a while. Feasting on those little moon cake accolades.
But your taste for stardust doesn’t go away.
So, here you are, on the moon. Somewhere you never thought you’d be, but still not where you want to get to. And, even though you’re on the moon (rather than the stars you were aiming for), you know it wasn’t easy to get there.
Do you even have the audacity to try shooting for the stars again? After not making it to where you want to be, but still making it somewhere worth being excited about (somewhere that someone would be excited about), do you even believe that you’d make it to the stars if you tried again?
Or do you say: “The moon is fine. The moon is better than anywhere that anyone that I know has ever been.”?
Let’s get our heads out of the clouds for a moment. Consider this: you decide, this year, you want to break a record of running a short distance in 20 seconds.
Now, let’s say that 20 seconds is a very ambitious goal. In fact, no one else you know would ever attempt to run that short distance in under 27 seconds.
But it’s cool. You’re ready. You train.
And you train some more.
And you get down to 24 seconds. 24.
The truth is, even though you wanted to get to :20, you never truly believed that you were ever even going to break 25 seconds. So :24 is pretty great.
Pretty damn great.
And everyone you tell, or who watched you train, or who knows your story starts to praise you.
They can’t believe you made it to 24 seconds. It’s amazing, really. No one does that. Only Olympians or other really special, talented people can do such things.
You must be one of those really special, talented people.
Because you hit 24 seconds in a world where :27 is the time to strive for.
In a world where even you didn’t believe, even with all of your hard work, that you could break 25 seconds.
But you know you were aiming for :20.
And you know that, no matter how much you try to get comfortable with your :24, you didn’t do what you set out to do.
Yeah, it is quite the accomplishment.
But if it wasn’t what you wanted, is it the right accomplishment for you?
You shot for the stars and landed on the moon.
But why settle for the moon?
Why settle for a promotion in a career you don’t like?
Why settle for text messages when you want phone calls?
Why settle for just having the url instead of starting the website/business/blog you wanted to start?
Why settle for something adjacent to what you wanted while you still have the chance to get the thing you actually want?
It’s okay to want more.
If no one has given you permission to want more out loud, then let this statement free you of your self-made inhibitions:
To want more money.
To want more time.
To want more love.
To want more achievements.
To want to break better times than 24 seconds.
It’s 2018 and I’m running for :20, or better.