Why life’s speed bumps are calming devices, not destinations to pitch tents

Unless you’re a perfect driver (and although I know many people who think they are, I know no one who actually is), you’ve probably encountered a speed bump*, undoubtedly going faster than the posted speed.

When you inadvertently hit one, it’s a clear sign to slow down. Likewise, rumble strips, those grooves on highway shoulders that shimmy your car and offer unexpected back massages when you accidently leave your lane, are signals that something needs to be corrected.

No one would ever dream of stopping their car, getting out and complaining because “woe-is-me! I hit a rumble strip!” Nor would they call their friends, rush to a support group or enlist their therapist. The proper procedure when hitting a rumble strip is self-correct. It’s a piece of cake.

It works the same when setting an intention. Reaching any goal, manifesting any desire is a simple matter of deciding that you want it and starting to move in that direction. It’s no more complicated than driving from say, Los Angeles to San Francisco.

Let’s pretend Los Angeles is what you have now—a beat-up Ford Escort, a crummy job and weekends watching re-runs alone. San Francisco, where you really want to be, is a shiny, new Jaguar, a high-paying job that utilizes and appreciates your greatest strengths and weekends watching movies with an astoundingly hot specimen of the opposite sex.

So, how do you get there? You start focusing on San Francisco. You forget that Los Angeles and your beat-up Escort even exist. And you remember that at every moment, you’re either heading towards San Francisco or you’re doubling back towards Los Angeles.  Every thought is a step in one direction or the other. Thoughts that take you back to LA are “Good jobs and hot dates are not that available” or the even more popular, “Good jobs and hot dates are available, but not for the likes of me.”

Thoughts that move you towards San Francisco go something like this:  “That new job is going to be so amazing.” and “Man, is this person sitting next to me on my couch ever so fine.” The more energy and excitement you invest, the quicker you’ll get there.

Some people get stirred up, take a few steps towards their desires, panic, and turn right back around towards Los Angeles. Others leave the LA city limits, walk for a spell, take a rest to look around, and then get pissed because it doesn’t look like San Francisco.

Of course, it doesn’t look like San Francisco. You’re not there yet. You’re still seeing countryside that’s just outside Los Angeles, stuff you have to pass to get to San Francisco.  But you’ve left LA. Say a cheer and keep focusing.  Whatever you do, don’t stop driving.

The only way to reach the sweet, champagne-drenched finish line of where you want to be is to keep your nose pointed in that direction. Do not turn around and look back. Los Angeles is history. Stay focused on…did I mention San Francisco?

When you hit those speed bumps, it’s just a sign to calm down and carry on. And as for those rumble strips, be grateful they’re showing you that, for a moment, you’re headed in the wrong direction. But it’s easy to self-correct.

Getting to San Francisco doesn’t take any particular gift. It just takes willingness to keep driving. To laugh at the rumbles trips. And to keep focusing your attention, energy and awareness.

See you in San Francisco!!!

*For those who like useless trivia, speed bumps are called sleeping policeman in Jamaica, kipping cops in Great Britain and speed breakers in New Zealand.

One Comment on “Why life’s speed bumps are calming devices, not destinations to pitch tents

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