I was travelling on the train the other day. I settled down in my seat and made myself comfortable for the long journey ahead. Opposite me sat a man in his late fifties reading a newspaper. Just as the train was pulling out of the station another man entered our carriage hurriedly. The man sitting opposite looked up and recognised him immediately.
"Hello Jack ...." he greeted the newcomer, "haven't seen you for ages ... not since college days ..."
They sat together opposite me and went on for ages reminiscing about the past. I closed my eyes and hoped that the journey would soon be over. The original man sitting opposite went on to explain how he'd become Marketing Director of a large multinational firm, then he moved on elsewhere as Head of Sales and Marketing, and then as Head of this and that ... The list went on as he boasted on how well he'd done in life.
His friend had become a teacher. He joined a local school after leaving college and he'd been there ever since. He listened attentively at the long list of successes which his companion related and then asked him: "What are you doing now?"
The first man stopped in his tracks, swallowed deeply and admitted that he was out of work. He'd just attended an interview for a job in the City, but did not hold much hope.
I suppose life isn't always easy and smooth for most of us. We all have our ups and downs. Yet, no matter what we did or who we were in the past; surely what is important is what we are doing right now.
We may be at work, in between jobs, or perhaps with no job at all. The important thing is to do something right now. The past is behind us and gone. Sure, we can learn from it and use our experience to shape our future as best we can. But there really is no point in dwelling on how successful we were then.
It's not where you've been that matters.
It's where you're going to!