The BOOM Podcast Episode 9: Journey or Destination

Youth motivational speaker and Amazon bestselling author Jeff Yalden continues his series of “from the heart” talks in episode nine of The BOOM Podcast. This time, he spoke about the journey versus the destination, mainly because he experienced a revelation of sorts as he was driving back home from a workout.

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“While we are all young, we are trying to achieve our goals and trying to put the plan in place,” he said. “We have a dream – and that dream is to someday arrive at this destination where we think, ‘finally I have arrived’ – and maybe happiness or fulfillment is there.”

To illustrate this subject, Jeff told two stories about a couple of road trips he made on his motorcycle.

Five or six years ago, Jeff said he took an incredible vacation on his Harley that took him from his then home in Cape Cod, Ma., all the way down to the Great Smoky Mountains in Tennessee for what is known as an Iron Butt run – the point of which is to ride 1000 miles in 24 hours.

“As I look back, I remember the ride. The ride to the destination,” he said. “My destination was the Smoky Mountains, but all I remember is the journey and getting there. I remember the ride home. I remember completing the 1000 miles in 24 hours.”

Another such trip had him on the road for nine days. He wanted to go to Sturgis, S.D., for the annual and very popular bike rally held there.

“I take off on the motorcycle, and I’ve got my helmet on. I get into Rhode Island, where I was able to take my helmet off. The weather was absolutely stunning. There wasn’t a cloud in the sky, and it was about 75-80 degrees. I rode the motorcycle to Williamsport, Pa., where I had to do a speaking engagement that morning.”

After that speaking gig, he got back on the Harley and rode with no helmet from Pennsylvania, through Ohio, into Indiana – up into Illinois and Wisconsin, and finally into South Dakota four days later.

“It was beautiful, and probably the best four best days of my life: Just me, the motorcycle and my music,” he said. “And then I arrived in Sturgis for Bike Week. I wanted to go see Mount Rushmore – aka Heads on a Rock. I got out there and I thought, ‘well, I’ve arrived. Now what?’”

For him, the “now what” was getting back on the motorcycle and making his way back to Cape Cod.

“I always wanted to go to Sturgis. It has always been on my bucket list, but you know what I remember most? I remember eight days with not a cloud in the sky. Eight days of riding with – for the most part – not even a helmet on – and just music.”

As Jeff was leaving the gym the day he recorded this episode of The BOOM Podcast, he had an epiphany.

“We all get caught up looking forward to tomorrow. We look forward to next week, next month – next year. We look forward to when we get that new car – buy that new house – we look forward to when we lose weight or we have a better job or we have more money. We look forward to this or we look forward to that.”

But then when we think we have what we think will make us better off, we realize that this wasn’t the answer to true happiness.

As Jeff was driving home, he enjoyed a feeling of happiness, but he couldn’t help but ask himself why he felt that way.

“I thought to myself that I don’t really know what my destination is. I don’t know what my goals are right now or what my epic dream is. I don’t really know what my purpose is – and this isn’t a bad thing. I have changed so much in the past four years.”

He believes many of us struggle with the idea of a destination. We think we are supposed to have a greater purpose – a bigger dream or a defined plan with concrete goals.

“I think we should keep asking those questions, but as I sit here right now, I think the journey every day is what we remember most versus the destination. If you are not happy today, you need to really look within yourself and ask why – and you need to figure out what you need to do. Is life perfect? Life will never be perfect. Is life fair? Life will never be fair.”

We have good days and bad days, but Yalden said the thing we have to understand is that happy people are not happy all of the time.

“Happy people choose to be happy about the moments – the moments that are in their lives – and we have moments all the time in the journey to where someday we arrive at that destination,” he said.

What is more important, the destination or the journey?

“I think our total fulfillment comes from appreciating the journey, and in the journey, be patient in the process.

Find out more about Jeff Yalden HERE.

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Author:Roger Yale

Roger Yale is a longtime contributor to McClatchy Newspapers’ The Sun News in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, focusing on stories about the people who make the Grand Strand awesome, including teen motivational speaker Jeff Yalden. He was voted Story of the Year winner four times by readers of The Sun News’ sister publication, Weekly Surge. Roger is the parent of adult twins. His son is a United States Marine and his daughter is currently involved in marketing for Broadway productions in New York City. He spent many years as a single father, and he believes that the experience was something to relish – and the bond he forged with his twins remains strong. Roger is also a working musician. For more about Roger, visit his blog: www.rogeryale.wordpress.com

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