Lessons from Driving in Traffic

I recently decided to exercise my freedom and sense of adventure to explore living in Venice, California. Moving from Ashland it is quite a different cultural experience and I started to experience that as I got closer and closer to Los Angeles. On the highway, I noticed an elevated sense of competitive driving and aggressiveness. It was interesting to me, because I began to drive more aggressively, I started to get competitive and zoom in and out, picking up the energy and molding myself to the energy of the other drivers around me.

At first, I did not really see it as a problem, enjoying the aggressive, competitive interactions that I was experiencing. But over time I started to notice how that aggressive interaction started to affect my body and my mind. I was dropping into this more aggressive, competitive mindset, I was thinking ‘wow, I’m moving to LA and is this going to be what my new experience will be like. Is this what it’s going to be like when I’m driving?’ I got clear that it wasn’t what I wanted my experience moving forward to be within myself, and wondered and questioned whether it was possible to drop out of it. I had so much history of enjoying driving quickly and even aggressively, I realized I had to change my consciousness and change my approach if I wanted to get a different experience within myself.

I formed the intention within myself to have a different attitude, the attitude of acceptance and peace. I realized I could just be in the flow without the attachment to getting anywhere.

There is a map app that many people use in LA and other urban areas called WAZE, and one of the things I really like about it is that it calculates the shortest and most efficient path, gives you your time of arrival and redirects you from a crowd sourcing perspective. Part of what I found is that if I just totally accepted what it was saying without trying to get anywhere any faster than I could, it allowed me to relax into the experience. I was driving, you know with the top down, looking around and enjoying the sights and energy. I could enjoy the music I was listening to because I adopted a surrender and faith in WAZE and that I could not do more than I could do to move myself forward.

I can profoundly see the implications of this for life. The more we develop a faith or a surrender to life, the more we can come from a perspective of being held and supported, the less we have to feel like we have to drive and push, compete, accelerate, and be aggressive in trying to accomplish what we are looking for. Internally, on some level we have charted a path and all is unfolding at the pace and rhythm that is possible for us.

Consider what it would be like, or even try it for a day, assuming that you cannot be any further ahead or behind in your journey, just showing up, staying alert, and moving forward at the pace that is offered to you. You can maybe even try to recognize all the extra energy that you are putting in to trying to get ahead, trying to get it done faster, and trying to get it done sooner.

This faith and acceptance of life and self will give you a peacefulness, groundedness, ease and competency that will support you in every aspect of your life.