It’s all about the actions behind the outcomes.

My morning drive includes 2 stops before work. Daycare and school. There are several parts of my drive that I cringe and prompt anxiety to well up.

  1. There’s the place on a long stretch where I rear ended another vehicle.
  2. Followed by an intersection where window washers wait to provide you a clean and ask for money or contra for their service.
  3. Then there is a short narrow street where you really shouldn’t be parking on both sides and its outside a school too. Accident waiting to happen as it’s a place where drivers play ‘guess who’ – as in ‘guess who’ is going to give way to the kids crossing on the hump that is not really a pedestrian crossing and then ‘guess who’ is going to give way to the oncoming traffic when both sides have cars parked.
  4. Once through that, I can breathe again and nip into a side street where I wait to be let into the long queue to get across the bridge.

Once I’ve passed these 4 points it’s a pretty smooth ride. The only thing left to navigate is a weird 5 point intersection with lights but no green right hand turn light. This last part can either be a patient pause until a gap comes up or a rushed dash.

After about 5 months trial and error, I have got this morning drive down pat and it mostly goes without a hitch. Some mornings there are some interesting observations and variations along the way. My departure time does have an impact. Just a mere 5min delay can have a 10min delay in my final arrival time. Or if it is raining I had better leave early because it can add 15mins and cause a little girl to panic about being late to class.

I have tried other routes and ways but this route is one I can trust to be the most consistent. It has fewer queues and gives me the best results (i.e. most uneventful and efficient). I am not one to stand still. So when it comes to driving, I prefer to keep moving than waiting in a queue.

After trialing different routes and trying different ways to stay away from the queues, here is what I have learnt, which have been useful reminders for other parts of life:

  • keep your eyes on the road and be focused. Morning chit chat with the kids is great but focus is key,
  • remember to breathe. I am amazed at how this affects my thinking, the anxiety I feel and most importantly patience,
  • stick to the plan. Deviations must be thought through and weighed up with a clear mind,
  • show appreciation on your travels.

Above all, what I keep at the fore is that we are all on a journey and it’s usually the thinking, planning and testing or research behind the action that determines the outcomes. It is all the stuff under the surface, and all part of the relief and celebration when we achieve the outcomes we desire. To ensure I have a productive day, there is nothing better than getting to the office and feeling grounded ready to go.

What everyday routines or processes have you developed, that also have helped you look at other things in life differently?

 

 

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