Lauren Del Ciello is managing editor for Water Quality Products. Del Ciello graduated from Illinois Wesleyan University with a Bachelors of Arts in English Writing and Francophone Studies in 2016. She joined the SGC Water Group and Water Quality Products in 2017. Del Ciello currently serves on the WQA Communications Committee, WQA WIN Advisory Council and WQA YP Advisory Council. She is co-host of the Talking Under Water podcast and host of the Checking In series. She has received journalism awards from the American Society of Business Professional Editors (ASBPE) for her work covering lead contamination issues and the COVID-19 pandemic's impact on the water industry. She was recognized as a 2020 ASBPE Young Leader and a 2021 WQA Next Gen Award recipient. Del Ciello can be reached at [email protected].   
Nov 02, 2020

Editorial Letter: Destination or Journey

This article originally appeared in WQP November 2020 issue as "Destination or Journey"

Lauren Del Ciello

In my free time, when I’m not hard at work bringing you the latest and greatest from WQP, hiking is one of my favorite hobbies and you will often find me out on the trail. Through recently with COVID-19 restrictions, those trails tend to be closer to home in central Illinois.

In my experience, there are two kinds of hikers: destination or journey hikers. A destination hiker is hiking with the goal of reaching a certain location, such as a water feature or a cliff side view. In opposition, a journey hiker hikes for the simple joy of putting one foot in front of the other. Journey hikers certainly find pleasure in reaching a destination, but their reason for starting a trail is purely the love of the process. Importantly, a journey hiker will savor every moment of the experience, not just the conclusion.

In full transparency, I’m a journey hiker, though I haven’t always been. It took time and patience to learn to appreciate every step of the process—from the crunch of the leaves beneath my feet to the simple silence of a lack of technology. And sometimes, the journey will not even take me where I originally suspected but to a new destination instead. Perhaps I’ll be intrigued by a small side trail or wonder about an unknown opportunity. These adventures are often even better than those originally planned for.


What does this all have to do with you, the driven water treatment professionals propelling our industry forward in an unprecedented business climate? If you’re a “destination hiker”—otherwise known as a goal-driven professional—I have news for you: your course may be derailed and your destination may even change.

The current business climate forces all of us to re-think our goals and processes. So buckle up and enjoy the journey. If you open your eyes to the possibilities, you may end up taking a path previously unknown though infinitely superior. It isn’t easy by any means to let go of expectations or plans we may have seemed so sure of just a short year ago, but being open to the process will surely reap rewards and position us ahead of the curve. Happy hiking, friends!

About the author

Lauren Del Ciello, Managing Editor, [email protected]