Driving Lessons

December 21, 2011 in Uncategorized

My mom taught me how to drive when I was 15.

One thing has always stuck in my mind about those driving lessons.

 It’s her yelling “COMMIT!” at me in the car!!

You see, I was learning how to pull onto the highway and  I was very hesitant.

 I’d start to pull out into the traffic but then I’d waver.

I wasn’t completely confident that I could make it so I wouldn’t fully accelerate.

You can’t really do that when you pull out into major traffic.

You’ve got to put the pedal to the medal and go.

So Mom would yell “COMMIT!” 

This became somewhat of a joke between us over the years.

Anytime, I would waffle on a decision in life she’d say “COMMIT!” and I’d instantly know what she meant.  

I’ve always been bad at making decisions.

I’m too much of a “thinker” always analyzing the pros and the cons to the point of exhaustion.

If you give me long enough, I can rationalize a good reason why I should put off for tomorrow what should have been done yesterday.

There has to be a middle ground between utter spontaneity and paralysis.

A place where you weigh things up but then take the plunge before you become stagnant.

As Mom would say…there comes a time when you just have to COMMIT!

The past week or so I’ve been “waffling” on my exercise.

I’m getting it done but only after procrastinating for a few hours.

In the beginning, I was up and out the door first thing in the morning.

I had a schedule and I adhered to it.

As time has gone on, I’ve found myself becoming a lot less rigid.

 Sometimes that is a good thing but with my personality and history it usually means I’m playing with fire.

It starts with something small like …”maybe I’ll drink my coffee first and then go...”

A few days later it turns into…..”Well maybe I’ll drink my coffee first and then check my email and go…”

Before long it ends up with “Don’t I deserve a break?”

And 3 days later it turns into “Well I’ve already missed 3 days so what’s the point?

Currently I’m still right around “Maybe I’ll drink my coffee and check my email…”.

Several hours later I find myself finally going for the walk but dragging an attitude along with me of

UGH…not THIS again…
The problem is I’ve fallen into the habit of thinking too much.

I’m actually giving myself the power every single day to decide all over again if this is something I really want to do.

And as Spiderman says “With great power comes great responsibility”.

He did say that, right?

So every 24 hours, I go through the decision making process all over again of whether I really want to exercise and if so–when?

This is the opposite of what my brother has advised me to do which is to “pre-decide“.

When you pre-decide something, you really don’t need to relive that decision making process over and over again every day.  

There are a lot of things in life we’ve pre-decided.  For example:
  • Should I breathe today? 
  • Do I have to pick up my kids from school? 
  • Should I flush?  
  • Stop at a red light? Come on….let’s live dangerously
  • Turn off the stove? What’s the point? I’m going to use it tomorrow. I’ll just leave it on!
  • Pay my mortgage? Will they really notice if just this one time I don’t?
Let’s face it.

Some things just don’t need to be mulled over.

And exercise is one of them.

My mom had another famous saying.  

“Decision by indecision”  
When I couldn’t make up my mind and wanted to forego making any decision at all, she’d say “Well guess what??

You still made a decision!

It’s decision by indecision”.

In other words, one way or the other there WILL be an outcome.

If you refuse to make up your mind that’s the same thing as saying you’re NOT going to do whatever it was you were considering doing.  

I don’t know if I want to go walking today…Maybe I will…Maybe later…maybe after coffee….

But in reality your indecision and inability to commit…just BECAME your decision.  

My mom’s advice to me was to never fall into the trap of indecision.

To never be paralyzed by allowing my mind to go in circles.

This is a weakness of mine and I’m calling myself out on that right now.

Time to COMMIT as Mom always would say.

Stop thinking about whether I should get up and go walking and pre-decide to do it.

And then…DO IT.

Tomorrow there are certain things that I’m going to do without thinking.

I will flush the toilet.

 I will feed the children.

I will breathe.

And I will walk first thing in the morning. 

I’m pretty sure that one other thing will happen.

I’ll be happy.

I will have given something priority in my life that I know without a doubt is getting me closer to my ultimate goal.

And when you make winning decisions like that you can’t go wrong.

1 Kings 18:21 “How long will you waver between two opinions?”
—>A divided heart will leave you powerless<---
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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Sheila December 22, 2011 at 7:59 am

GREAT post! I love it. COMMIT!!! I used to waffle about exercise too, but that was almost 8 years ago. It started with me doing it as part of my to do list, laundry, dishes, picking up the kids, flushing the toilet. 😉 Then it became my "ME" time and I will be dammed if I ever cheat myself out of my ME time. Now I need it, and crave it, and feel lost without it. YOU WILL GET THERE TOO! Just commit!


Shannon January 11, 2013 at 2:07 am

WOW!! I just read this. It’s 9:02pm, just got the kiddos all tucked into bed. I didn’t go to the gym yesterday (did 5000 fitbit steps at home though) and tonight I thought I would just go downstairs and fold laundry. But BEFOR folding laundry I wanted to get “motivation” from your blogs. COMMIT!! Earlier today I had the plan to go to the gym. This evening I still had the plan. Then later this evening I changed the plan. COMMIT! Amazing how THIS blog post (not the one before or after it) touched my heart in a real way. This is exactly how I was thinking feeling. Ok, I’m heading to Planet Fitness right now for an hour, and will fold clothes when I get home and am full of energy. God Bless you.


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