Saturday, December 4, 2010

Lessons from Tangled

The other day, my friends and I went to see Tangled.

If you haven't seen it, stop reading. Right now. Get in your car. Drive to the theater. Go!

There is one part in the movie that was really inspiring- right before Rapunzel saw the lanterns.

She was talking with Flynn, and was starting to get really nervous. When she realized she was finally going to see them, she was overcome with a lot of emotions. Their conversation went something like this (not the exact quote, but my hazy recollection... I'll update it when I see it again, because let's face it... I probably will):

I have been waiting for this moment my whole life. It's been my dream. What if it isn't as great as I imagined?

And what if it is? Then my dream is over and I'll never have it back.

Then you'll just have to find a new dream...

The reason why this hit me the way it did is because I've had that same thought. As long as I can remember, the #1 thing I've always wanted to do was go on an African safari. The wildlife, the scenery, the adventure- everything about it has always appealed to me. That's the number 1 thing I want to do before I die.

In January 2009, I went on a safari during my trip to Uganda. It was incredible! One of the best days of my life included a morning safari in vans and then an afternoon boat ride on the Nile. Words can not describe how amazing it was!

And then, just like that, it was over. Crossed off my list. And for the past (almost) 2 years, any time the topic has come up of "what do you want to do before you die?" the first words or thought is always "well, I already completed my #1."

What I realize, is that if I keep thinking this way, I will never be able to have as great of a moment for the rest of my life. My thinking about this will always be in the past. So, like my homegirl Rapunzel (voiced by the amazing Mandy Moore), I need to find a new #1. Things like getting married and being a dad will always be at the top, but I need to find that thing that motivates me- that I strive to accomplish.

That way, when I get to cross it off, my soul will truly be happy.

Oh yea, and go see Tangled!


  1. Great thoughts Jeff! I have a forever evolving bucket list and when I think of great things I add them. I guess I have never had a #1...but rather an assortment of grandios ideas. Keep writing! I will add you to my list of blogs that I follow :-)

  2. (voiced by the amazing Mandy Moore)-I'm glad you can acknowledge that. :)

    Also, I'm sure if The Buried Life showed up on your doorstep, you would have an answer!

  3. Nice post! I've been thinking about it. I watched Tangled for at least 5 times, and I realized something. If we achieved the dream, yeah, just go get a new dream. But here is the thing, what if we achieved the new dream? Go get another new one? It seems like it's a circle of life, what is the purpose of repeating it, chasing for new dreams again and again? There's no definite "destination", Is life a dream chasing game or what? Getting a new dream is a good answer, but it didn't answer my heart's deepest doubt.