I read somewhere once that when coming to a crossroads, the only people who are happy that they picked the wrong path are gamers. And, it’s very true.
To those of you who are non-gamers, let me explain why. When there is a crossroads in a game, there will always be a path that leads to a dead-end, and a path that leads to the continuation of a story – providing there is a story. And sometimes, when you pick the right path, you might not be able to go back.
Some of you may be wondering why is that a problem, why go back at all? That path is probably filled with things you need to fight to reach some wall and you’ll need to head back anyway. And you’re right, you always need to return to the right path, but the wrong path is often filled with items or treasure or countless other things you might need later on while you continue on your right path.
“The right path” has always been this elusive path that I would eventually find. I mean, when you’re young, your parents always try to steer you towards the right path, and make sure you don’t stray or pick the wrong path. We’re always hearing “oh, you’ll pick the right path, don’t worry.” But what is so wrong with picking the wrong path? If we’re strong enough, we often make our way back.
And the experience (XP – gamer joke) we gather from the wrong path will definitely help us against bigger obstacles in the future. For example, a sword you pick up for a character in the game from going down the dead-end could be very rare, and help you fight a boss in later stages. I’m not saying that without the wrong path, you fail on the right path. But mistakes you made could help you out and make you stronger in the future.
What I’m trying to say, very messily, is don’t dread the wrong path. Make your mistakes, learn from them, go back to the right path and continue your story. I’ve always believed that you learn more from making mistakes than from getting everything right.
And, truly, if you are strong enough, you can always change your path. Even if you’re on what you consider the right path, but you always have that nagging at the back of your head saying that you should do something else, that you’re on the wrong path for you, go ahead and do it. Because different paths, crossroads and mistakes are what build character, and what make us different.