What you want is closer than you think and here’s why.

3855300632_de3ecc9b6eThere’s this funny, sort of modern-day fable someone once told me about some investment banker-type guys who took a trip to Mexico.

They’re sitting around in this seaside village and they notice an elderly Mexican gentleman fishing at the end of a pier.

In talking with him they find out that a huge supply of rare, super-valuable fish are swimming around in that very spot. But the gentleman just sits and stares at the vast blue all day and maybe catches one or two to feed his family. Or none. The catching is not really the point.

The investment banker dudes are flabbergasted. In broken Spanish, they excitedly tell the calm, steady fisherman that he’s sitting on a gold mine. Waving their hands around rather spastically, they explain that, with the abundance of fish swimming around right there in that very spot, they could work with him to set up a huge enterprise. With the amount of rare, sought-after fish that they would be able to catch with the help of a commercial infrastructure, all of them–the fisherman included–could make tons and tons of money.

The corners of the fisherman’s eyes crinkle with a barely detectable, knowing grin.

In a thickly accented, gravelly voice he says:

“Why should I catch many, many fish to sell to make lots of money? So I can retire by the sea in Mexico and relax all day with a fishing pole in my hand?”

Point taken. The banker dudes shuffle off with their tails between their legs. They spend the rest of the day drinking Coronas with their toes in the sand, pondering the meaning of life.

I find that, more often than not, what I truly want is closer than I think. It doesn’t require setting up a multi-national, multi-million-dollar enterprise. It doesn’t even require a six-figure income.

For me it’s all about having as much time as I want to spend with the people who mean the most to me. And making a difference in the world.

What is it for you?

Before you set up your corporation, launch your product, sign the contract, or call the lawyer, ask yourself what you’re really after.

Then remember the Mexican fisherman and the banker guys.

What you really want is closer than you think. (Tweet it.)

What do you really want? Have you ever found yourself making it harder or more complicated than necessary to get it?

Photo Credit: Andy on Flickr: http://www.flickr.com/people/atmtx/



  • Kate, I love this so much. I’ve always tried to keep myself focused on what I really want, making it happen now rather than later. It really is closer than we think! Gratitude has been the best help on this journey for me. I love this story!

  • michall weizman

    kate! this is so truth ‘i love that fisherman. money you cant live without & sometime you cant live or breathe when you have so much .we must find that gentel part in oureself that will keep us in a good loving path.!!l.o.v.e.

  • Beth

    So appreciate this. A great reminder of how much I value my time and freedom. Thanks!

  • Makes perfect sense to me! Thanks for reminding me that I’m right where I’m supposed to be. :)

  • Reading this is so refreshing! I’m tired of all the measages out there about the cookie cutter vision of what success is. For some people (I think I fall into this category) success to them is not about the multi-million business or a designer house on top of the hill. More and more people are realizing it’s really just having time and enough money to do what we want to do, with the people we want to do it with. Thanks for reminding us that what we really want is closer than we think. Perhaps we’re too fixated in looking forward that we fail to see that it’s already right here.

  • I just heard your interview on the Daily Love Extravaganza and came to read more from you. So true. What we really want is closer… and we need to just let ourselves figure out what it truly is. For me, just be happy and have time to spend with my kids and husband, and have enough money to live, travel and for all of us to take lots of classes we are inclined to take. Time to live and enjoy eachother and the life we have in front of us. Thank you Kate for being and teaching.

  • Dot Dougherty

    This is so uplifting! I am 83 with not a lot of years to look forward to so the best and maybe only option is to enjoy the now.

  • As a stay at home mom for 12 years, and now a stay home and write and work on website businesses, I’ve created a life where my time is spent as I please and thus far, the bag of coin is slow in coming. But I do appreciate being able to spend my life in my way, as opposed to working a day job away from the house which I have done before and doesn’t appeal to me right now. That is a great blessing and this post reminds me to be grateful for this blessing. As always, Hugz & all the best.

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