Tuesday, October 28, 2014


Roatan, Honduras
A few years ago I was planning to visit Cuba, an amazing country, rich in culture that even some of the most seasoned travelers haven't experienced due to the United States embargo. For months I envisioned what I would do in Cuba. I was so excited to compare current times with my memories of being there twelve years prior. Would I remember any landmarks? Would all the cars still look retro? Would I think the cuisine was just as delectable? Would I feel the heavy influence of the government in seemingly casual conversations?

As I got closer, word spread that my group would not be allowed to visit. Our plans changed from Cuba to Guatemala and then Guatemala changed to Honduras. My companions and I could have focused on the disappointment we felt, but we shifted our attention to where we were heading instead of where we weren't.

I knew very little about Honduras. I hadn't researched it because Honduras wasn't on my itinerary—it was not part of my plan. As I accepted that I would soon be in Central America, disappointment disintegrated. While not on my initial list, I started to see Honduras as more than a consolation prize. I began to appreciate it for being its own country with a new culture I had yet to experience. I made an adjustment. I chose to enjoy Honduras rather than mourn Cuba.

When life takes your plans and crumbles them right before your eyes, do you simply mourn the plan or do you adjust? You may have envisioned a life very different from where you are at this moment. Maybe you thought you would have a spouse, children, a better job, more money, and/or a home by now. Maybe you planned to relocate or travel more often or to further destinations. It's possible that when you look at your life it doesn't even resemble what you anticipated. In either case, you can mourn the plan or you can amend the plan. You can cuddle up to disappointment and shift even further from your plan or you can shift yourself and make adjustments to the plan.

Whether life doesn't deliver what you anticipated or you haven't delivered on the promises you made to yourself, it is important for you to exercise flexibility. Focus your attention on where you're heading instead of where you aren't. Make the most out of detours by making adjustments. Detours can bring the most memorable and fulfilling adventures and teach the most valuable lessons.

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