Commitment versus possibilities

Sometimes I have deep thoughts while sitting out on my deck on summer mornings.  There’s something about stepping away from my office and electronic devices and being in the fresh air and “among the trees” (to quote a favorite poet, Mary Oliver). It helps me let go of mental clutter and think more clearly and deeply.

Rocking chair on porch with railing overlooking beach at Bald Head Island, North Carolina.


One thought that came to me recently was a bit of a quandary: Is it better to be totally committed to something? Say, your job? A project? A goal? Or your current networking plan?  Or is it better to be deliberately and deliciously open to possibilities?

I completely get, trust, and teach the art and science of creating a big-picture vision, setting intentions, and having specific goals. Both my research and experiences have proven to me over and over again — and in a variety of circumstances — that these practices and habits actually work.

But I have also seen that there is something amazing, wonderful, and incredibly freeing about letting go, even for just awhile. It’s about releasing all expectations; simply choosing to be open to what is and what could potentially be.

Ahhhhh, it can feel so very good!

Or…is it possible that these practices could be blended together strategically? Setting up your vision of how you want to be and what you want to create and accomplish. Listing your intentions of what you want to see, do, experience, feel, and so on. Stating some specific, measurable goals. And then blissfully letting go and being open to what happens.

A friend and I were just talking recently about how – oh yes – we had set lofty and ambitious plans for the summer.  And then God, The Universe, Karma, or Other Forces Bigger and More Powerful Than We Are promptly set things upside down or added in a sharp left turn. And – hey! – it was leading us to a better, more interesting, more rewarding place. Huh.

Can we trust ourselves and the world around us that much? And be that free and flexible? I think it’s worth a try.

What are you thoughts around this? I invite you to pour yourself a cup of tea or coffee – or a frosty libation – kick back on a nearby porch or under a welcoming shade tree, let got of your mental clutter, ponder the contrasts here, and let me know what you think.



4 Responses to Commitment versus possibilities
  1. Ron Rintala
    June 30, 2015 | 2:08 pm

    I believe that a life committed to intentionally searching for, creating and living out possibilities is a life well lived. Deliberately seeking out new opportunities, new places, new friends, new experiences and new joys without a fear of failure is a very liberating way to live. The intentional, constantly evolving journey, while adventurous or risky to some, is the refreshing aspect of avoiding getting into a monotonous routine that, while safe, can be a bit soul-crushing.

    • pattid
      June 30, 2015 | 3:14 pm

      Hello Ron! So great to hear from you and thanks for reading/commenting. Your comment is beautiful – even quotable. I so agree. Routine, familiarity, tradition, “the ways things have always been” can be comforting, but where’s the fun? The risk? The adventure? The learning? The memorable conversations where you laugh and say “Can you believe we did that???” I love it.

  2. Angela Andrist
    July 6, 2015 | 1:00 pm

    Hello Patti, Yes, a quandary between committing and being open to the possibilities. I’m committing to doing author/book trailers and keeping an open mind to other video projects.

    Congrats on working on your TWO books. I wish the best for you bringing them to fruition.

    Have a fabulous summer and commit to your writing and be open to the possibilities.

    • pattid
      July 7, 2015 | 9:32 am

      Angela, thanks for sharing your great example of commitment versus possibility. Finding the balance that works for you is critical! Appreciate you being a reader!

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