Life can become busy. The cost of doing business means another early morning leads to a late night at the office. Being overprogrammed means having to decline not one, but several concurrent events; feeling overwhelmed is when you need to minimize one group thread in favor of a more important one. Commuting feels like a death knell.
Before you know it, you're looking for shortcuts, left and right, in all areas of life. You deem the quickest and shortest way also the most efficient, stopping at nothing to maximize productivity And let's not get started on fast food and microwaveable victuals.
To the serious driver, though, there's nothing more important than considering the longer, more thoughtful approach. After all, when you stop focusing on the length of the journey, you can begin to enjoy it more. (Wasn't it Emerson who said something like that?) Who wouldn't relish the opportunity to spend more time behind the wheel, if a more pleasant experience lay ahead?
Presenting not one case, but three cases, for taking the long way, because sometimes, taking the shortest route yields not the greatest results.
You don't always know where the road will lead.
The best kind of road is the unpredictable one, and you're more likely to find it on the longer way. Taking the unknown route means not knowing what you'll encounter on and alongside the road, whether a winding back road or a super-straight stretch of highway.
Remember, the roads that run parallel to the highways are often the roads that the highways replaced. Sure, the route will be less direct, but the scenery and towns that the highway bypassed are a window into the past.
You won't be going faster, but you'll be having more fun.
Don't think of time on the long route as wasted. Think of it as memories made and new roads discovered. How long can you sit on a road, staring straight ahead, barely turning the wheel? Not that long.
Taking the long way won't necessarily let you drive faster—it almost certainly won't—but it will let you have more fun. If you love driving, which we know you do, you'd much rather be discovering new corners and straights off the beaten path than taking the same monotonous highway that everyone takes. You won't have to talk about how bad the traffic was on the highway. When people ask why you were late, instead of blaming it on a crash on the 405, you can just say you decided to have fun instead. And that's more important.
A shorter route isn't inherently better.
Just because you can find a shorter, or more direct route, doesn't mean there's any additional value in taking it. A short route through boring roads and traffic will suck the joy out of your day. A longer route through a place you don't know well—or that you know and others don't—can make your life more enjoyable. Isn't that important?