I took a morning walk yesterday along a winding road in the woods. As part of my new working-from-home regimen, I’m trying to practice a little self-care. I’m working on giving myself some quiet time to think about my business, my family, my friends, and the world we’re all navigating right now. Yesterday, about thirty minutes into my walk, I found myself face to face with a bold yellow sign that captured everything I was feeling… Winding road, 30 mph.
Very rarely do we get where we’re going by following a straight, quick path.
Most of the time, the trail we’re on is twisting and crooked. It meanders and roams. Sometimes it’s rocky and muddy. Many times it comes with slowdowns and delays. There are moments along the way where things get postponed, and times where everything is on hold.
Now more than ever, I realize this is true. It seems to be a constant theme in my life that has played out many times. I look back and see my path to getting married for the first time, navigating my divorce, then remarrying. I see the path and challenges that came with getting pregnant, the joys of raising my twins, and the transitions that come with having teenagers. I see the path that has been my career and all I’ve learned, with each of the twists and turns.
I live a beautiful life, but much of it hasn’t followed my plan.
There’s a passage I’ve been reflecting on that captures this. “Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.” Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Instead, you ought to say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.”
The keys to living a life that doesn’t follow a straight, quick path?
Flexibility, patience, and trust.
When you understand that the path you’ve created for yourself may change unexpectedly, you develop flexibility. Your ability to pivot and turn evolves as you face each bend, and you create higher levels of resilience. You begin to understand that the straight line is not always the easiest or best way to arrive at your destination.
When you understand that things won’t always happen on your timeline, you learn that there is a time to be patient and wait. You learn that sometimes you have to walk before you run and that on occasion, the slow path is the fastest.
When you understand you’re not in control of the path and you begin to trust in something greater than yourself, you’re able to let go of the results. You make plans and set goals, but you release yourself from the need to finish on your terms. Sometimes there’s something more significant at play that you can’t see. When you can lean into knowing that, you conquer.
Right now, you may feel like you’re on a very unpredictable path. The twists and turns may be creating anxiety and restlessness. You may be experiencing rocky parts of the trail, and in some instances, the road ahead may seem to disappear completely.
Just like the sign said, when the road starts to wind, slow down. Take it a day at a time – stay focused on your destination. And, if the destination changes, be OK with that and lean in. Above all, learn to enjoy the journey and find some beauty along the way.
Today, we’re facing a moment in time where we all need to lean in and develop our flexibility, patience, and trust. This blog is focused on helping all of us create the resilience and positivity we’ll need to thrive in the midst of all the winding roads we’re facing. Subscribe and join me here today. We’re better together… thanks for being part of this with me. – John