Anyone who lives in a medium to large size city knows how stressful driving can sometimes be. With our busy-paced life, there are many times when we find ourselves running late for some appointment. As we’re driving along, we find ourselves watching the clock move too quickly toward the time we’re supposed to be somewhere. We might be thinking that if all the traffic lights will just cooperate, we’ll make it. Then all of the sudden we have someone pull quickly out in front of us from a driveway or a side street. They were in a hurry to get out there, but once there, they drive really slowly. We have no choice but to slow down too. All the while we’re thinking that now we’re really going to be late! We begin to get irritated and impatient.
Most of us will start berating ourselves about then for being so disorganized that we didn’t leave as early as we needed to. We can come up with all kinds of negative thoughts about ourselves — or the driver in front of us. None of these thoughts will be helpful to us at that particular moment. I’ve had this happen to me, and I found something that really works for me.
No matter what the driver in front of me is doing, that I find irritating, I imagine that he or she is someone that I love. If that driver was a close friend, or a family member, I would feel much more patient and even protective. Getting to an appointment on time would not be as important as making sure that my loved one stayed safe. I literally put an image of someone special to me in that driver’s seat. Particularly if it’s an older person, I imagine a protective shield around her or him, and I stay very patient. Whoever is in that car is loved by someone, and I just “borrow” that love.
It’s amazing how that shift in my attitude brings peace to my heart! I don’t feel irritated. I don’t feel rushed and impatient. I just focus on making sure that my “loved one” stays safe as long as I’m behind in my car. When either that car or I turn off in a different direction, I say a silent prayer that the driver and any passengers stay safe. I arrive at my appointment feeling relaxed and in good spirits, even if I am a few minutes late. Try it, and see if it works for you. When you change the way you look at a situation, your whole experience of it changes.
Until next time,