The other day I was cruising down the interstate in cruise control. I enjoy cruise control because it keeps my car at the legal speed limit and I don’t worry about being caught by the Highway Patrol for speeding!
I’m doing 74 mph when suddenly, my car jerked as if I’d hit the brakes 2-3 times. I immediately turned off the cruise control because this was not the first time this had happened. My cruise control was not operating correctly. Ugh.
This means I had to be in charge of driving the speed limit for a 45 minute car drive. Do you have ANY idea how hard that is? Especially when you’ve trained yourself to let the car do the driving? And especially when you wear sunglasses and you can’t see the speedometer without lifting them off your eyes?
I thought about painting a bright white line on the plastic over the speedometer so I could see more clearly but no. I thought about finding some sunglasses I could see with in the dark area of the dashboard, but haven’t done that yet.
Every time I drive into town, I have to be in charge of how fast I drive. I did not realize how accustomed I’d gotten to allowing a machine to dictate how fast I drove. I didn’t even realize how hard it would be to keep my driving within the speed limit. Every time I looked, I was doing 80 mph.
I had been mindless while my car drove the correct speed limit to my destination.
Huh. That got me to thinking about life and living in cruise control. I know! Deep, huh? So deep.
But it is true. It is so easy to just mindlessly live each day of our life in cruise control. Mindless living – going to sleep, getting up, going to work, getting home, going to sleep, getting up, going to work, getting home, taking a vacation, getting home, going to sleep, getting up, going to work, getting home, having a day off for holiday, getting home, going to sleep, getting up, going to work…
Cruise control. And while we live in cruise control, we think, “Someday I am going to do what I REALLY want to be doing. Someday.” Or we live toward this glimmering dream of retirement when we can REALLY enjoy our lives. Yeah, right. Or we go through life without thought at all.
I don’t want to live in cruise control. Sure I don’t mind it in my car, but I don’t want to live that way in my life. I don’t want to get to the end of my days and look back with regret. We have ONE life and it is ours to decide what to do with.
I do NOT want to be cruising mindlessly down the highway of my life.
I want to live deliberately with MY foot on the gas pedal and MY eyes checking the speed limit and MY choices bringing me to destinations in strange and wonderful ways. I want to take back roads that don’t require cruise control. I want to turn corners and be happily surprised by what I see when I turn them.
I want to drive down dirt roads wondering where the road will lead. Or with the top down, letting the wind totally destroy my neat hairdo! I want to be able to pull over, get out and meander through the woods to discover a babbling brook with flowers all about. I want to arrive at my destination with my hair messed up, dirt streaking my shoes, a huge smile on my face, and satisfaction in my heart.
What about you? Are you living your life mindlessly cruising or are you driving with the top down? I plan to make changes so that every day is lived fully, deliberately, with purpose. I will enjoy my life fully!
A simple broken cruise control gave me an epiphany.