It’s been said the journey is more important, fulfilling or enjoyable than the destination. A three day point to point hike is all about the journey, not the car waiting to bring you home at the end. Graduating from college is just as much about the experiences, contacts and relationships gained along the journey. The diploma received on graduation day is not very marketable if the social and life skills weren’t also acquired along the way. The enjoyment of accomplishing a personal record in a marathon is awesome, but most likely it couldn’t have happened without the training and encouragement shared with old and new friends during those long training runs.

Whenever there’s a journey the likeliness of setbacks, or bumps in the road, exists. It might start raining during one of the days of the three day hike. Do you bailout and call a friend to pick you up, or pitch your tent and read the book you brought along? If you missed your marathon personal best time by 2 minutes, do you call it quits on running, or do you enjoy a well deserved beer with friends at the finish line and talk about your next run?

It’s how we handle these bumps in the road that build our character and define who we are. Some destinations, and the bumps that accompany the associated journey, have more of an impact on who we are than others may have. How one handles a rainy day during a hike is less of a test of an individuals character than how that person handles financial difficulties during college.

Life is the mother of all journeys. Translation…there’s going to be a lot of bumps along the way. Deal with them and move on to the next adventure in the journey. Think of the bumps as “Hey. Slow down. You’re missing something here. Or, That wasn’t such a good idea was it?”

The occasional setbacks act as checkpoints to make sure we are staying on track. Some are little speed bumps that remind us to keep our hands on the wheel, while others may be more like a detour sign that forces us to re-evaluate. Either way, deal and move on.