Have you ever stopped to wonder… Why do a few people have their life filled with abundance as if the road ahead of them was paved with perfect materials while others are drowning in theirs or finding rocks, holes and unfortunate events constantly?
Two trains directed to the exact location were told that their destination couldn’t be reached due to the current state of the rails and bridges along the way. With both of them stationed parallel to each other, the drivers decided it would be the passengers deciding which road they should take.
Both drivers knew, due to their experience, that they would reach the final destination before or after no matter the path they took, but they didn’t know what awaited them and their passengers along the journey. They would meet at The Mid-Station before arriving at their final destination.
The choice was up to the 100 passengers, but first, they had to select which train to board.
95 of them boarded the newest-looking Black Silver Train, a fresh new model which was more elegant, clean and with a young conductor looking confident, while the other 5 chose to board the White Train, which looked a bit older, the typical train they all knew and trusted, with an older driver.
Once they were all sat down, the drivers reunited all passengers into a room and explained which option they could take.
The Mountain path was clearly more beautiful, it had more curves and more views and would pass through some scenic bridges, waterfalls and villages, which looked beautiful and perfect for pictures and entertainment. It was a slightly longer way, but it was way more fun along the entire journey.
The other option was The Ocean Path, a path that was barely taken due to how many tunnels it had and how risky the journey was. It would keep the passengers mainly in the dark for most of the ride, and ultimately, they would pass near the ocean, with a great view but the significant risk of falling over as had happened before.
Of 95 people, 73 passengers aboard the Black Silver Train voted to go through the Mountain Path, 20 of them refrained from choosing, and since most of them wanted to experience the world, take pictures and enjoy the ride as max as possible, they let the crowd select for them. Taking a risk was unnecessary. Only 2 of 95 wanted to choose the opposite road, but as they were aboard already, they remained sited. Those 2 stated their opinion, but due to their previous decision of which train to board, they were forced to remain on that train and follow the majority.
The White Train driver reunited the 5 passengers and explained both paths. Before voting, one of them asked the driver. “Which one do you think is best? Your expertise is important”. The old driver replied:
In all my years, I learned that mountains, bridges and curves only lead to more chances for trouble along the way. Tunnels, on the other hand, are faster and safe from collapsing. The chances of us falling into the ocean are barely there since a previous accident happened. That means they were forced to learn from failure and improve the rails to avoid it from happening again.
Their mind was made immediately, even though they knew there was a risk, 4 of them chose the Ocean Path, with only one doubting due to his fear of dying.
-There is no living without risk— Said one of the passengers to the fearful one. -You chose this train, we got you.
Upon departing, both seemed to be headed in the same direction, but as time passed, one of the trains headed towards the mountains while the other remained in a straight line towards the first tunnel.
Their choices were now impossible to change, rail lines won’t intersect again until the final destination.
The Black Train passed through railways filled with rocks, old rusty rails, and bridges, which almost crumbled due to the weight of the 95 passengers, forcing them not to approach the windows, collapsed rocks from the mountain forced them to stop multiple times, exhausting their food and water along the way while the passengers had to go out and helped clear the way. Due to the big group, the newest train had to stop in many places without meaning to the passengers to refill fuel and clean the toilets repeatedly, which were in pretty bad shape due to so many curves and people using them. The satellite connection was unstable, and the weather around the mountains was grey and rainy. For the passengers, it was just one nightmare after another. Due to his unhappiness, one of the 2 passengers who voted for the opposite road decided to jump into a river, sacrificing all his belongings and simply seeking to be able to take his own decisions.
The White Train was kept in the dark for most of the way, allowing the five passengers to sleep and save batteries. Due to how calm the road was and the lack of internet, they used the time to know each other, build trust and explore the train. With so many toilets around, they all had their privacy for as long as they wanted and felt the need to clean the place after use since they became friends with the other passengers.
By the end of the last tunnel, a big scenic view appeared, showing the beauty of the ocean and a more robust rail system in place to keep them safe. They had a smooth ride and had enough time to stop and enjoy the train’s extensive food and water supplies while sitting down on a cliff and watching the views. In the distance, they saw a person floating near the coast and quickly went to help. The passenger who jumped into the river almost died, but the water current brought him quickly into the ocean. The driver and the passengers rescued him and offered all the extra resources their train had. This group created a bond between them which would have been impossible if any of their choices were different.
The Black Train arrived at the mid-station days after, expecting to see the other train and be able to switch and try a different route. The fresh new train was now filled with mud, scratches and an exhausted starving crowd. The White Train arrived so quickly at the Mid-Station that after waiting for a bit, they simply decided to continue their journey and were never seen again.
The passengers from the Black train asked the driver to wait for the White Train to arrive, without realising that the other train was long gone and they were locked into the same for the rest of the road while the White Train was able to reach many other beautiful destinations.
Life is precisely the same as in this tale, most people choose what looks new and fresh. They seek quick fun and focus on the easy journey, which promises the best ride. Most of them will follow the crowd and block their alternatives for the sake of not choosing, and a few of them will regret their choices when it is too late. They are stuck in a life filled with disgrace and averageness, scarcity of resources and trouble, simply because when given a choice, they chose wrong.
This group is forced to be ok with their choice, to be satisfied with what they chose and continue the rest of their lives with their decision.
On the other hand, a few people will have the courage to take risks, they work in the dark while others enjoy during the day, they invest in a smaller group and focus on experience over fun. They are constantly presented with opportunities (White Trains), and due to their decisions, they are surrounded by abundance. The connection with those choosing similarly is more stable, and this small circle leads them to more opportunities with similar people. They are constantly growing due to the influence of those surrounding them.
In life, like in the tale, we are presented with two paths to choose from: the Fixed Mindset Path and the Growth Mindset Path. Each path leads to a different destination, and it is up to us to choose which one to take. Most of the way will be locked, like the train rails and in most cases, it is almost impossible to jump into the other path without huge sacrifices.
If life gives you a chance to change from the Black to the White Train, take it, no matter how hard you have to work. There will be few opportunities to make the switch to a better life.
This Tale is a part of the book “A Blessing in Disguise” by Fer Rivero, releasing next year.
You can listen to this article on Fer's Medium blog https://medium.com/@ferrivero/the-two-paths-in-life-the-tale-of-the-two-trains-8db5ddff7551