What the Mars Landing Says About Goals

Today NASA landed a dune buggy on Mars, a planet 300,000,000 miles way from earth so they could give it some sort of ultrasound. How difficult must it be to figure out how to launch something into space? How difficult must it be to guide something traveling that distance over the course of 6 months and successfully enter the atmosphere and successfully land it in good enough shape to collect and send back information?

Forget about the technology and the science. Forget about the math, even though NASA certainly didn’t forget any of these things. Think instead about the level of thinking necessary outside of these domains.

  • What kind of thinking is necessary to set such a goal? How limitless must your belief system be to imagine such a thing.
  • What kind of curiosity does it take to decide that you absolutely must know what the planet is like? What kind of future do you believe is going to require that we understand what is possible on a planet this far from our own?
  • What kind of resourcefulness does it take to solve the problems that comes along with a project like this, starting with getting the money for a project like this, one with a greater likelihood of failure than success.
  • The human being, Homo sapiens, as bumbling, difficult, and short-sighed as we sometimes are, find a way to bring into existence anything they can see with their mind’s eye. Be it curing disease, building massive cities, or landing a dune buggy on Mars, given a long enough timeline, we find away to make it our reality.

If you have ever doubted your goal, if you have worried that your goal was too big, that is unachievable, that it is somehow out of your reach, you can be certain it is not. There’s a greater likelihood that your timeline is wrong than the goal being to audacious.

Filed under: Goals

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