Are you stuck in traffic?
I’m writing today’s blog from the back seat of my awesome Xterra that’s wrapped in Lauri’s Lemonade Stand advertising and on our way to the Sea Otter Bicycle Classic in Monterey, CA. (If you read last week’s blog you can see how much I LOVE CYCLING!) My hubby is driving and our friend Mitch is tagging along from our infamous Brew Crew that rides mountain bikes every Thursday afternoon and we are stuck in Santa Barbara traffic – it’s something we’ve learned to just count on and figure into our driving time with every trip through this area.
And there’s the hook for this week’s blog 🙂 Traffic in the form of delays, setbacks, brake lights as far as the eye can see, even some serious accidents. Accidents that can cause bumps, bruises, or even death. You can relate to that, right?
Sometimes there are short delays and we just get off course a bit. We went a little off our budget and need to re-adjust the next month to make up for our over-spending. We spoke harshly to a loved one and need to make amends. Some delays are much longer – you’re delayed for an incredibly long time – I’ve even had moments where they’ve shut down the freeway and we’ve been sitting for hours!
Examples of Life Traffic Delays
In life, the delay can be months or even years. In my life, a great example is me not graduating high school as a teenager and then graduating as an adult in 2012! (Hey, don’t judge…when I got my diploma I felt like Super Woman and it has propelled me into awesome, amazing things these last 5 years!)
Graduating high school was not only a delay, but felt like I was looking at miles of brake lights and that it would never end. I never felt like I missed out of anything by missing prom and only slightly sad that I didn’t become a huge basketball star, but not getting my diploma really stuck with me throughout my life. But when it was finally a time where it could be corrected, a time where I could focus on it, when it became a priority…I did it!
Delays are Inevitable
One of the things I’ve learned throughout my life is that delays are inevitable, period. Small ones, medium ones, big ones and everything in between. You know what else I’ve learned? There is ALWAYS an end to the delay (setback). Even when it is something as drastic as a death in the family…time heals and we live on.
If I asked you right now what your current delay was, what would you say? This is usually a no-brainer – you think of it immediately as soon as I pose the question. Is it a small delay? Is it one with brake lights as far as the eye can see? How do you feel when I ask the question of what your delay is? Is it something like how you feel in actual traffic? Anxiety, frustration, stress, maybe a few added curse words to boot? Or if it’s the long delay with miles of brake lights – it may just be a feeling of depression and sadness that you just can’t shake as you’ve accepted the fact that you’re going to be stuck for awhile. Either way, there is hope and it will end.
Don’t Give Up
Gordon B Hinckley has a saying that says, “Don’t worry, it will work out. Things will work out.” I know that it is hardest to see the end of a delay when you’re in the middle of it. But I want to re-iterate the resounding word of Gordon and say that it WILL WORK OUT. Our delays can be used as learning tools if you let them. The old cliche’ says there is always a silver lining and I believe that’s true. Whenever I have come through a struggle or delay, my 20/20 hindsight vision ALWAYS sees that it made me a better person when it was over.
Where Are You Now?
You are in one of three places right now. 1 – You are in the middle of a delay right now. If this is you, what is your attitude? Can you find something positive about your situation? Is there something you can be grateful for right now? 2 – You can see the end, but you’re not there yet. Hang in there! You’re almost there! Start really thinking about the lessons you’ve learned and how you will come into your next delay – can you change something now that will help you better handle your delay next time? DELAYS ARE INEVITABLE…but how we handle those delays are a testament of what we were and are willing to learn from them. 3 – You’ve made it through the delay – you’re done! You’re out! Gear up – because your next delay is coming. Celebrate your wins, reflect on your lessons learned and take a moment – maybe even in meditation – to contemplate how you’ve grown and what you can do better next time.
You Are Loved
Wherever you are in your journey, please know that you are loved – right here, right now – just how you are. Please also consider that you never know what other people are going through. Be kind in your gestures and words to others. You might make a difference in someone else’s life just because you chose to smile instead of grit your teeth. Here at Lauri’s Lemonade Stand, you are in a safe place to be loved, feel love, and share love. If you need love, please reach out. If you are full of love right now, share it with others. If you are part of this community – you are already receiving and sharing love. Spread it, take it…whatever you need. We are here for you!