I mess up in life with great frequency (I think they call it being human (or something)).
Really, I act and react to and inside of life in ways that allow for instant and immediate (that’s the same thing) gratification in situations that would (more than likely) benefit from a period of pause.
I think they call that period of pause “reason.” However, I’m not incredibly familiar with it…so…I can’t really confirm my nonsensical assumptions surrounding it.
This habitual way of living can be compared to sticking your hand under a running faucet that’s spewing hot water. No, it doesn’t burn right away, but you’ve done it enough times that you know what’s coming.
You have those 2 very long seconds where the understanding and anticipation of your skin scalding coalesce.
My whole world lives inside of those 2 enchanted seconds. Where you know what you’ve done and you’re just waiting on the emotional or literal repercussions.
Obviously, life doesn’t always burn. Some of the very best things that have happened inside of my interesting time on this planet were due to my inability to take pause.
Like my love, Allie (impulse).
And the trip I took here (impulse).
And all of the time and energy I’ve invested into this (impulse).
On Sunday a dear friend of mine and I visited a new church that we immediately fell into sweet, sweet love with (we may or may not have arrived late due to Google Maps being a terrible app (and us having zero navigational proclivities)).
The entire teaching was on the human brain and the highways of thought we enable and cultivate inside of it.
You’ll never believe it, but, our habits (thought and otherwise) are all manifested through repetition.
Shock and awe.
I’ll give you a second to process this.
What I gathered from this grand little talk on the human brain was that our habitual thinking is a lot like walking down the middle of a meadow every day (this is how my brain works). Eventually that path will begin to wear, and it will be less difficult to travel this hypothetical path. Furthermore, ultimately, all of the foliage will turn to dirt and it will become the only path that really makes any sense to walk around on.
If your path is a positive, uplifting, forward-thinking, and self-loving path…then, well, that’s fanfriggintabulous.
But, if it’s not (which was the point of this sermon), you have to learn to deconstruct the highways and reconstruct your meadow (a little amalgamation of concepts for you fine folks).
I’ll be the first to admit that my meadow is sort of not awesome. I’ve spent a lot of my life doing and thinking and being things that haven’t been the most…shall we say…spiritually fruitful.
No, I’m not calling my moral steadfastness into question, here. I’m calling my ability to genuinely like myself into question.
I don’t feel weird saying that, either.
I know there are people looking at the computer screen right now going…ME TOO, lady! ME TOO!
This isn’t to say I totally hate myself.
I mean, honestly.
I have dimples. And ideas. And I make amazing pizza.
It’s just that when it comes down to it, you are your largest and most actual critic. And if you aren’t saying the right things, you’re capable of doing some monstrous damage to your sweet little self.
Pair that with a tendency to allow other people to tread your meadow freely and you’re doubling down on the wear-and-tear.
So how, you ask, do you deconstruct this barren highway so that you can reconstruct a bigger, badder, and more awesome meadow?
Stop putting your feet on that path.
And stop inviting other people to hang out in your meadow.
I know, right?
As are most things that are right and good in this world.
Allie and I went for a walk this morning. Our typical route…until I decided to make a sudden turn down a foreign road.
This was met with unexpected resistance.
Eventually, though, she decided that I knew what I was doing…and followed me.
Tomorrow we will probably take a different path.
And we’ll continue to take different paths.
Until, eventually, the whole, wide, expansiveness of the outdoors looks familiar.
It wouldn’t be learning if you didn’t take your dog, too.
(How’s that for super introspective and riddle-laden?)
Life is good.
See you soon, loves!