I recently listened to an interview with Questlove of The Roots on Alec Baldwin’s podcast, Here’s the Thing.
Questlove is an extremely thoughtful, introspective, and smart person who had a ton to say about history, dieting, and much more.
But one of the quotes he said that stood out to me was that he “wasn’t enamored with the vehicle, but what makes it run.” I’m kind of paraphrasing the quote because I’m too lazy to go through the interview again to find exactly what he said. Sorry about that.
Anyway, I think that quote is very powerful.
Don’t pay all of your attention to that big end goal. Rather, focus on each specific, smaller task that you’ll have to accomplish to reach that goal, and you’ll achieve it.
Let’s take entrepreneurship, for instance. If you’re a startup founder looking for that big exit but can’t stand the day-to-day grind, you’ll never make it. But if you work hard every day and continue to learn every way to best serve your customers, you’ll have a better chance to build a successful business.
If you’re raising a child, are you longing for the day your kid turns 18 so he or she can go off to college? Or are you enjoying as many moments together as you can?
Are you working toward that one day when you can retire, or trying to make the most of each day of work and enjoy the ride?
Many times the journey is more important than the destination. So don’t be so enamored with the vehicle, but what makes it run.