I spend my day going in circles.
I am behind the wheel of a car multiple times a day shuffling between work locations, my daughter’s school and her activities. Now, this can be spent in a positive state or hinge on the edge of road rage. I try to stay cool and collected but a lot of the time, the other drivers make it difficult.
This morning, as others turned up their road rage, I dialed mine down and reflected. I started thinking about how their time on the road mirrors the rest of their life. How these habits are affecting the physical and mental health of these drivers and what we are indirectly teaching our children.
Full Speed Ahead
The light turns green and the car speeds up to (or past) the speed limit in a matter of seconds … to slam the brakes on for the next red light.
Isn’t this similar to jumping to conclusions and then backtracking? What if we assessed the situation first, took a little bit of time to make a decision, and then be prepared for the outcome? We would be able to look ahead and know that rushing wasn’t necessary and a slower pace would save energy.
A road sign or flashing lights indicate that construction lies ahead and is blocking a lane of traffic.
We could say that this is the same as ‘Full Speed Ahead’ given the lack of preparedness for future situations but I see it differently. This can be similar to how we react to road blocks in our life. Do we keep rushing towards a closed path even though we know it is there? At what stage do you react and accept that a change needs to be made? Do you realize that your reaction causes delays and changes to other people too?
I am the type to see a road block and move to the correct lane as quickly as possible. I will admit though that I’m a little more stubborn in other situations. I can now reflect that I would have been happier if I had made the change when I first noticed the dead end I was hurtling towards.
A car changing lanes in the hopes that they will get ahead of others and to their destination faster.
“The Grass is Always Greener on the Other Side” – and weaving in traffic is no different. The person is constantly changing their mind and trying to find the quickest path. Sometimes, they will succeed just like a river that erodes rock over time. Often though, they just delay everything further, increase the risk of emergency situations and cause distrust and conflict.
A car takes an extra second to accelerate off the light and the car behinds start to honk.
The car horn is to be used as a warning system to other drivers and individuals in the surrounding area. It is not an extension of a person’s ego yet it seems to now be used to express the driver’s importance. We should have self-confidence and “Toot Our Own Horn” but I believe a motorized vehicle is not the place to promote your worth.
The car horn has also become a place to express a driver’s frustration at the world. Instead we need to accept that there are things that we cannot change. The amount of traffic on our roads is not going to improve. We will continue to have two seasons: Winter Snow and Construction. There will be delays and everyone (including the boss) need to realize that life happens. So take a deep breathe and take the hand away from the horn.
Now, it is time for me to continue my circles and join the other drivers on the road.
In the comments, please share how you deal with road blocks on the road and in real life. Share how you have been able to SPROUT some BALANCE! And remember to follow us and SPROUT a conversation on Twitter – @sproutbalance – and Facebook!
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