Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Who is driving?

A chauffeur-driven Town Car sped by me on the way to work today. I wondered who was being driven, where they were going, what filled their day’s agenda, and what their lives were like. I also wondered about the driver: who was he, what was on his day’s agenda, what his life was like. The person who directed where the car goes is in the back, but the person who knows the route to get to the desired destination is driving in the front.
Which of those two jobs is harder?

On most days, it is probably more difficult to be the driver, right? The drive has to:
  • Know route options
  • Anticipate traffic or construction
  • Choose which route is best
  • Reacting when something unexpected happens
  • Keeping the car prepared for the trip
  • Keep all passengers safe
  • Know and follow the laws
  • Be nice to the passengers
The passenger who gives the final location has to:
  • Know where the car should end up
  • Pay the driver’s fee
So, it looks like the driver has the harder job. But, what does it take to know where the car should end up? There’s more behind the scenes for the passenger than randomly picking a location, right? When you think about it, who is driving whom?

Obviously, both roles are important and both people only succeed when they work together. The driver has nothing to do if no one wants to go somewhere. The passenger has no way to get where they want to go if there is no driver. One is not more important than the other. They are just different. They need to respectfully rely on each other.

None of us likes a backseat driver. When you are the passenger, know your destination and let the driver do his job. Micro-managing will not help the driver or your trip. Likewise, passengers do not like a driver who questions, judges, or doubts our destination. Remember, sometimes each of us is a driver and sometimes each is a passenger. Know your role.

What about those solo trips? Sometimes we travel alone and have to know the destination and how to reach it. If we don’t set our own destination and route, we end up following others or roaming aimlessly, which makes accomplishment and any sense of success unlikely.

Whether you are the driver or the passenger, support everyone who’s along for the trip. The mutual support makes the journey more enjoyable and the destination more meaningful.

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