Are you under pressure to get things done?
Do you feel stressed about meeting all of your deadlines on time? Are you juggling multiple priorities and afraid you might drop one of the balls?
I was rushing around last week in this sort of mindset, thinking that if I just moved faster I would have more time and get ahead of the tension and stress I was feeling.
Then I almost ran over a snake with my car and this made me stop.
I had pulled off into a residential neighborhood – cutting across town to get around freeway traffic. I was speeding along, thinking about all of the things I needed to get done in the next hour when I turned a corner and there in the middle of the street, coiled up with its head waving in the air was a snake.
Because I was driving impatiently and thinking ahead to what I need to do – my reaction was slow. I barely had time to maneuver my wheels to miss flattening the snake with my tires.
Sure, a 25 inch snake is not something you expect to see miles from any park in a concrete-and-asphalt neighborhood in downtown Oakland. I’m sure I could have made excuses for accidentally killing this random snake in a city street.
But the reality was that I was in rush mode and distracted – not caring much about where I was – just focused on where I was going.
The slow-moving snake was an instant reminder of how our rushing is more often harmful than helpful.
What are we rushing for? A few extra minutes? And what gets run over or killed in the process? Is the cost of our rushing worth the effects on our bodies, minds, health and relationships?
What matters more – our deadlines or being conscious and considerate of life?