Wrong Side of the Road
One of the things I love when on my NordicTrack Stationary Bike is the ability to virtually pedal anywhere in the world, but many times we are biking on the wrong side of the road. Or at least it feels like the wrong side of the road compared to our highways in the United States.
Driving on the left—like they do in Great Britain, Ireland, Scotland and many other European countries—made sense as swordsmen in the 18th century preferred to keep left in order to have their right arm nearer to an opponent. The United States, with their large wagons, wanted everybody to pass on the left, so they kept to the right side of the road.*
When considering or beginning a huge change after a pandemic, a shutdown or a recession, it can feel like you’re on the wrong side of the road. You want to keep edging over to the other side to familiar territory, but by doing so, you will soon face oncoming traffic.
Here, we will establish three mindsets to help you face change when you feel like you’re driving on the wrong side of the road! One: Stay in your lane; Two: Establish road rules and Three: Pace yourself.
One: Stay in Your Lane
To stay in your lane takes a consistent reminder of your current location. When driving in a foreign country on the opposite side of the road, it takes a mental shift and constant concentration to keep to the left when you are used to staying on the right.
This same mental shift of concentration also applies to those making significant changes in their lives and businesses. Focusing on your path ahead, staying in your lane, will help you remain grounded when confused about where to turn or what to do next. Once grounded, you are able to speed up and pass others on the opposite side.
When driving a vehicle, the traffic lanes are usually marked for you, but the hardest task in life and business is identifying the boundaries of a project or plan that will take you where you want to go. It can definitely feel like you’re driving on the wrong side of the road, but you have to trust those boundaries to get you to your destination, even if it takes longer than expected!
Two: Establish Road Rules
When I think of establishing road rules, I think of traffic stops and barriers. But I also think of the consistent habits that we adopt in our everyday driving, travel and business. When embarking on any new venture, usually there are new systems to be implemented and habits to adopt.
In the book Atomic Habits, James Clear talks about habit stacking and the value of new small routines that have the power to create positive change and success. This applies whether this is in continuing present work or starting something new.
In Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less, Greg McKeown encourages us to say no to the non-essentials. (see Going Down the Rabbit Hole) It’s so easy to get distracted, especially if continuing to work remotely with kids, spouses and other interruptions. Creating a schedule and consistent routine that is workable and keeps you focused will feel like you’re moving safely on the right side of the road.
Three: Pace Yourself
Developing a pace that is doable, creating less stress in your life has never been more important. Our country and whole world has just faced a huge upheaval. With mixed political messages, continued shutdowns, riots and financial uncertainty, keeping a steady routine with a balanced perspective and pace has never been more important. (see: New Year Goals)
Your feelings can change for the better when new healthy habits are implemented successfully. Change is uncomfortable and many times, it feels messy. However, what feels like the wrong side of the road now may soon feel like the right side of the road with mindsets that are open to good road rules. Continue foraging ahead in establishing your lane, create a good solid path with systems that will work for you, and establish the rules and boundaries that will help you and your business grow with a solid pace, no matter what country you’re in! Free Download: Goals Worksheets
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