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An Excruciating 15 mph

July 28, 2016

 

People tell me that I’m a very calm person bringing peace wherever I am. I have that feeling after meditation for sure but in all honesty I don’t feel that way all day, and I don’t know what about me transmits that feeling to others. But something interesting has happened and I can feel one area where my peace has definitely been disturbed.

 

We have moved to a military base and expect to be living here for the next few years. The speed limit on the base is 30 mph unless otherwise posted. We have one long stretch of road from our house that is 35 mph, and there is another long stretch out to the main gate that is 45 mph. In some areas, like the residential neighborhoods, it is an excruciating 15 mph. While I understand the need for it I avoid those roads as much as possible.

 

What is interesting to me is how slow it all feels! I would never have thought of myself as a speed demon but driving at 35 mph feels like I’m crawling. Impatience rises up within me and I really want to press that gas pedal a little harder. Worse still, the road in front of me is often deserted and tree lined so I feel like I could go faster and no one would ever know. I don’t because I’ve been warned that the military police are unforgiving and very vigilant. And I see them all the time so I set the auto speed and mosey along.

 

This calm person everyone else sees is not so calm in a car it seems. What a surprise to me, and what am I in such a rush to do anyway? Better that I enjoy the scenery, the wild life, and the warm breeze from the open car window. I’m working on it!

 

It all got me thinking about how we become so accustomed to what is going on in our life that changing things up can highlight aspects of ourselves we weren’t aware of. When one is used to highway driving at much greater speeds slowing down is a surprise. It would be true the other way around too. Being impatient isn’t how I would have described myself but having to drive more slowly is highlighting this less than desirable quality. Where did all my peace go?

 

Are there changes in your life that you have been forced to make for one reason or another? What emotions do these changes invoke for you? Pay attention to those emotions that don’t serve you well. Once you start noticing it in one area of your life you will see it show up in others too. Awareness is the first step to releasing it from your life.

 

Oh boy!! Talk about on the job learning! I had just finished writing and was leaning back in my chair with my hand on the mouse to press save when the power went out. Yikes!!! Happily, auto save kept the majority of the post for me but it was a full day before I could get back on the computer to check. It was a full day of noticing the impatience rising up and a full day of practicing the letting it go.

 

Clearly impatience has been lurking in the background for me and now that I’m aware of it I will work harder to notice the other areas in my life that it shows up – then let it go. What shows up in your life?

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