His interview comments show that Robert Frost was aware of the popular belief that the theme of The Road Not Taken was that choosing the less popular road is the key to success. Frost claimed that it was really written from the point of view of a walking companion who had difficulty in choosing a direction when meeting a fork in the road. Frost said that at the end of the day, no matter which way his friend had chosen, he was always second-guessing his choices, worrying that he had chosen incorrectly.
The thought of changing directions is so intimidating that many people continue to trudge in paralyzing fear toward “retirement” rather than risking a change in direction which could lead to ultimate fulfillment. After all, “The devil you know is better than the devil you don’t,” the old saying goes. You just get into a rut.
I like Paul J. Meyer’s definition. He once said that a rut is a grave with the ends kicked out.
I used to meet with a group of fifteen old guys about once a month. During a discussion of life paths, I found that I was the only one who had actually accomplished a major goal I had set as a young person: I had written a book. The others, like the wanderer in the Frost poem, had let choice and chance determine their paths until they found themselves in a career situation that was far away from where they originally had planned to go.
One key to effective planning is not to look at career fairs and college offerings for career ideas. Instead, look at what you spend your time and money on right now. That’s where your true love lies.
Once a friend swore up and down that he really needed a garage and would give almost anything to get one. The problem was that he spent his time and money on fishing and hunting. Now we know why he still doesn’t have a garage. It wasn’t his true love.
Finding your real true love is the first step, and after that, all the roads not taken won’t mean a thing.