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Adulting: Who's in Front of You?

I was driving down a long British road the other day, and a big truck was in front of me. The driver was going at a leisurely pace under the speed limit.

Because I am often anxious, I like to move fast. I like to get stuff accomplished and therefore feel better about myself. (I'm not endorsing this philosophy of mine!) But because I hustle and bustle, naturally, I believe I “need” to drive the speed limit.

To help myself slow down, I've been doing a self-control exercise. I've been making myself stay behind these unhurried trucks on the highway.

It can be mental torture.

But I physically have to slow my pace and calm down. It’s self-control at its finest. Okay, maybe not at its finest. I’m still learning.

Today though, the leisurely pace wasn’t necessary. I was not stressed, and I wanted to get around the truck. So I did. And as I was moving, I couldn’t help thinking about how much my situation was like life. If you’ve read my blog long enough, you know I’m a sucker for a good simile or metaphor.

How often do we let the people in front of us set our pace?

I think pace setters can be a good thing. For instance, children slow me down. But they need to, and I’m thankful for that. I want to pay attention and focus on them. I’m happy to keep them directly in my line of vision.

It’s also very rewarding when they slow me down enough to have me see the world through their eyes. It might be something small, like a flower they are excited to pick. With them, I stop, examine those petals, and am thankful that I didn’t miss the moment.

However, sometimes, just like I did with today's truck, we may need to go around other people on that "road of life" we sing and talk about. We shouldn’t let other people always control our pace. That might be a friend that is giving bad advice. It might be a well-meaning family member taking advantage of our time and resources. It might even be someone we don’t know very well, but we compare ourselves with them and have low self-confidence.

Go around guys and gals, go around.

Driving around a giant vehicle can be intimidating, and we might also be nervous to step around a difficult person in order to move away from them. But when the road ahead is smoother, and we feel the freedom, we will see it was definitely worth it.

And the scenery up ahead is so much nicer!


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