Think Beyond the Present

Life is full of noise.  Although many people can be productive when they are surrounded by noise, and many people enjoy lots of noise, try to find some quiet time for yourself each day to reflect on yourself and your future.  Far too many people situated in the postmodern epoch are not thinking beyond the present.  In Postmodernism or, the Cultural Logic of Late Capitalism, Fredric Jameson contends that ephemeral thinking is a dominant characteristic of the postmodern moment.  In The Condition of Postmodernity: An Enquiry into the Origins of Cultural Change, David Harvey agrees with Fredric Jameson that ephemeral thought is a central characteristic of postmodernity.  While one should certainly have solemn concern about what’s going on in his or her life in the present, this should not hinder him or her from thinking about and planning for the future.

Don’t simply let your present conditions and circumstances defeat your vision for where you want to be in the future.  If you have set high aspirations for the future, then you need to find some quiet time each day to reflect on how much progress you’re making toward meeting those goals.  You need to think about solutions to your present conditions and circumstances that are hindering or that could be hindering you from reaching your goals.  Think about the things you’re investing your time in right now and resolve whether the things you’re investing your time in are conducive to moving you closer to meeting your goals.

Even if people begin to wonder why they cannot find and contact you at certain periods of the day, don’t worry about this.  Effectively planning for the future will require you to get away from it all for periods of time.  If you can only find about 15 minutes a day of quiet time, use this time wisely to reflect on yourself and your future.  You will be amazed at how much can be accomplished by just reflecting and focusing on your future for just 15 minutes a day.

During the quiet time that you’re engaged in planning for your future, always have something to write with available.  This can be pen and paper or a laptop.  It’s vital to capture your thoughts in written form.  Too many people do a whole lot of talking about what they want to do and what’s going to happen to them in their future, but they have not developed a thoughtful written plan to help lead them to achieving their aspirations.

If you’re really serious about your dreams and aspirations, you will create a written plan that contains the thought, research, and knowledge necessary to progress you toward making your dreams a reality.  Yes, you must think about aspirations and discuss them with others, but you must inevitably construct a well-thought written plan for those aspirations to be taken seriously and for them to be achieved.

Yes, life is saturated with noise but find ways to escape the noise to plan for your future.  Just because things are not working in your favor right now does not mean that they are going to continue to not work in your favor—unless you just give up on your goals!  You may have to make changes to your goals and the details of your written plan, but you should never give up on your dreams.  Don’t let any person or thing keep you from accomplishing your goals.

References

Harvey, D. (1990). The condition of postmodernity: An enquiry into the origins of cultural change. Oxford: Blackwell Publishing.

Jameson, F. (1991). Postmodernism or, the cultural logic of late capitalism. Durham, NC: Duke University Press.

Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

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7 comments

  1. The first line was the most powerful of many powerful statements in this writing. Life is full of noise. You have wisdom beyond your years my friend. I am excited and delighted to see what you will eventually become in the future.

  2. I think the noise in life can help you move throughout. There is always going to be some noise and stuff you don’t want to hear. All noise isn’t negative though. I spend a lot of thinking about the future. I also spend much time putting into action. I think that’s the best about the future and funny. We can often plan and it never comes to pass. Great post like always. Teach the peoples!

    1. Lol @”Teach the peoples!” Thanks, Drew! Yes, some, if not most, of life’s noise can be quite useful and enjoyable. However, we do need to find those quiet moments that life offers also to reflect on our future. Life can change our plans but we must still work towards our goals with great zeal. Thanks for reading and your response.

  3. Great piece yet again, Antonio. You are right, I do try to spend time with myself and think about my goals. I am in a different stage than others in my young life because I have MS where at any time this disease can stop me from doing the things that I am accustomed to doing. Lucky for me, it has not psychically effected me as of yet.That does not mean I should wait for it do so in order to make the necessary plans for my future.Goal setting and putting it in writing is imperative to me, at this juncture of my life. This was a great motivating article as well to remind me to keep on pushing and get some “quiet time in”.

    -Ms Scripter

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