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Sinbad and Lovegood January 12, 2013

Posted by nrhatch in Gratitude, Happiness, Life Balance, Mindfulness.

Captain Sinbad and Captain Lovegood set sail from the Port of Happiness on a sunny day in separate ships.

Both captains had years of experience at the helm, weathering storms and  navigating unfamiliar territory on land and at sea.

There, the similarity between them ended.


Captain Sinbad focused his attention on all the bad experiences he had encountered on past voyages, holding them front and center in his mind.   He piloted his ship with one eye glued to the rear view mirror at all times.

Captain Lovegood used a different approach, allowing the past to recede from view except when recalling it would be to his immediate advantage in piloting his ship through a difficult passage.

As they set sail, Captain Lovegood hoisted anchor and charged ahead with alert curiosity and wonder, ready to embrace new adventures and experiences.


Captain Sinbad failed to fully raise his anchor or release the mooring lines that held him fast to the shore.  As a result, he and his crew made little headway.

On sunny days with a lively breeze, Captain Lovegood and his crew soared across the water, enjoying everything the present moment had to offer ~ the wind, the waves, the creaking timbers, and the salt kissed air.

Not so, Captain Sinbad.  He never relaxed into the moment.  Instead, he oscillated between re-living past storms and worrying about imagined storms ahead.  No matter how perfect the moment at hand, Captain Sinbad missed it ~ lost as he was in the past and the future.


When another ship came into view, Captain Lovegood  called out a hearty greeting, expecting the ship’s captain to be friend, not foe.  Tossing out the bowline,  Lovegood invited the passing sailors to come aboard and share life experiences and a few laughs with his crew.  The captains  exchanged weather warnings and other pertinent info ~ alerting each other to what might lie ahead.

Classic-pirateNot so, Captain Sinbad.  He viewed every passing ship and its crew as a potential threat.  If they drew too close to the side of his vessel, he took immediate offense and ordered his crew to fire off a few warning shots from cannons ever ready to chase passing ships away.

As Captain Lovegood and his crew traveled from the Port of Happiness to the Rock of Gibraltar, they enjoyed smooth sailing, delighting in the sights, sounds, smells, and tastes that greeted them as one moment of the journey unfolded into the next.  Relaxed and happy, they weathered passing storms with ease.

In contrast, Captain Sinbad’s crew grew disheartened and weary from the paranoia, fear, and worry which Captain Sinbad wore like a badge of honor even on the fairest of days.  Exhausted and tense, the crew grew sloppy.  The slightest gale caused chaos and confusion on board, blowing Sinbad’s ship farther and farther off course.

Before reaching port, his crew jumped ship, leaving Captain Sinbad to fend for himself.  With no one to assist, the once able captain ran aground at the Rock of Gibraltar, sinking his ship in the process.

After disembarking, Captain Lovegood and his crew regaled those they met with tales of their delightful voyage from the Port of Happiness.  Asked about the storms encountered, they scoffed, “Those?  Why they were nothing more than a bit of hot air ~ mere puffery ~ easily negotiated.”

After dragging his soggy self to shore, Captain Sinbad told a far different tale of the “same voyage.”  His version included repeated attempts by pirates to overtake his ship and steal his cargo and dark storms which threatened  everything he and his crew held dear.

Manatee River

On your journey through life, which captain do you want at the helm?