I’ve been in Austin, Texas this past weekend participating in a business mastermind where I work with other business owners on streamlining the vision for Be Well Meals. One morning three of us decided to enjoy a bike ride around the city.
Somehow, I ended up leading the group. Our intended destination was a beautiful bike path that winds around a lake in the middle of downtown. As we approached a one way street I didn’t want to ride down it in the wrong direction, so I went left. Nothing felt wrong about the turn so I eagerly pedaled forward leading the charge towards the lake…until we were on 6th street. Now would be a good time to mention that we started on 6th street. We were not near the lake and instead of following the straightforward-city grid I had led everyone in a big circle.
I instantly felt frustrated. We were on a time schedule so getting to the lake was completely out of the question now. Once I stopped to figure out how I had gotten so turned around I noticed through some tress that I had led us directly to Whole Foods, not just any Whole Foods, but the first ever Whole Foods, which apparently is a landmark for the city of Austin. I could have let the anxiety and frustration get to me, but instead I decided to breathe, park my bike and go inside. I walked around and observed their culture, their juice bar and walked out feeling inspired and relaxed. The act of just allowing myself to realize that maybe my accidental destination was my true destination let creativity and inspiration kick the anxiety straight out of my system.
We rode away from Whole Foods with no idea where we were going, but we rode with ease. We now believed we could just pedal and the destination would be just fine. Then, like a shining star, suddenly we were in the parking lot of a Trader Joe’s.
My wrong direction ended up taking me to two places that were exactly where I needed to be. Places that the universe wanted me to see and I benefitted immensely from experiencing.
The whole wrong turn, getting lost in an unfamiliar city and never getting to my intended destination bike ride reminded me a lot of people’s (including my own) health journeys.
When we embark on a health journey we are ALL going to take some wrong turns and go in circles. We will eat the cake. We won’t meet our daily goals. We won’t drink the gallon of water. We won’t lift the weights. We won’t go for the run. It goes on and on. There are so many possible wrong turns, but with limitless wrong turns comes limitless results. We can feel better. We can lose weight. We can sleep better. We can have more energy. Our lives can improve. And they don’t have to be perfect. We might start out wanting to lose weight and wind up ending a bad relationship or changing jobs or pursuing activities that make us happy.
In our life sometimes we will ride in circles, we will overthink things in our mind round and round and we will feel like we aren’t moving forward and progressing.
Screw the circles and embrace the journey.
So, embrace your health journey. Accept you might eat that piece of cake over the apple. That’s the beauty of it. That’s the journey and when we accept that it isn’t always going to be perfect, and we allow ourselves to just keep walking and putting one foot in front of the other, even when we trip, we end up in places that are more wonderful and beautiful and perfectly meant for us than we could have imagined.