Get off the treadmill and hit the road

Sunday, January 16, 2011

"Get off the treadmill and hit the road" sounds like a harsh statement.

However, I recently heard a minister offer that bit of advice.

After listening to his reasoning, I agreed and came up with motives of my own, and I, too, determined to get off my treadmill.

There are various meanings of treadmill. One is that you use it for exercise. Another is that you are racing so fast through life you can't seem to make meaning out of it or enjoy what you're doing.

I chose to delve into the results of an exercise treadmill. I dislike walking on the mechanism because it's boring to me. I would rather walk or run outside so I can see the scenery, or even walk around a gym track.

At least I'm going somewhere. When I walk on a stationary treadmill I go nowhere. I'm moving, but I'm staying in one place.

Life can be like that stationary vehicle. You are going nowhere, merely going through the motions.

Often we are so satisfied with where we are that we fail to walk ahead. It's easier to stay in our comfort zone.

Yet if we fail to hit the road eventually, we continue accomplishing nothing.

If you dislike your job but you're afraid to try for another, you're miserable your whole life. You may even be depriving the world of your gifts and talents.

If you keep saying you're going back to school yet refrain from taking any action toward enrolling and taking that first step, you're staying on your treadmill.

God gave everyone a dream, if you take time to recognize it.

Even though that dream may seem too difficult or to far away to ever reach, it is possible if you will just hit the road rather than staying on your treadmill.

Sometimes people run into all kinds of obstacles in trying to reach their destiny, but it's there, lurking somewhere in the distance.

It may be right under your nose -- that diamond in your backyard.

But you have to get up and move in whatever direction you need to go to find it. Those obstacles can be steppingstones to reaching your goals.

"All things work for the good for those who love God and are called to his purpose." (Romans 8:28)

Everything does happen for a reason. Regardless of how difficult your problems and hardships seem, remember they are building blocks to achieving what you truly desire. They allow you to grow and learn what you need to know to carry out your vision, your dream.

But if you can't leave your everyday routine, what you've always done or what you've learned in the past, you'll continue to stay walking on your treadmill staying in one location. You'll never reach the place that God would like to see you go -- that place where you'll be the happiest.

When it seems like good things will never happen, don't give up but remember you have to do your part. You can't keep standing in the same spot and finish any journey or accomplish goals.

Travel ahead. Do whatever good is necessary to accomplish your ends.

Get off your treadmill and hit the road.

Ellen Shuck holds degrees in psychology, religious education and spiritual direction and provides spiritual direction to people at her office.

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