I was blessed to have a weekend away without the kids recently so I headed to Woodend for some mountain biking.
It had been raining a bit in Woodend and the mountain bike trails were showing it. Lots of puddles and mud. Not the sort of puddles you might swish through quickly along the road but the kind that tries to grab hold of your bike wheels and hold you there.
I started off trying to ride around them a bit, this was single track ( and for those of you not up with the lingo single track means narrow) so there wasn't much room. Success was a bit hit and miss, sometimes I made it around and other times it was like the muddy puddles were hauling me in and my wheels would slide into the puddle. Or I would wobble around doing everything in my power to stay upright.
It wasn't long before I figured out that I was better off going straight through..., it was sticky and muddy that way - but by far the simplest, safest and the quickest way.
I got to thinking while I was riding along that the puddles were like those sticky uncomfortable, sad, challenging (insert any word that means difficult for you) bits in your life.
When given the option, many of us have avoided that hard moment, or confronting that person or feeling that grief, or working through that issue with someone. You went around the puddle. Of course you did, so not realising how slippery, muddy and unpredictable going around puddles can be.
Sure you didn't have to get muddy ( or maybe you got even muddier because you fell in) but you sure went for a wild ride... And without the satisfaction that comes from slipping through a puddle.
There is something about going straight through a puddle that feels really good, freeing - just like when you get to the heart of something. Once you get out the other side ( and you do as long as you keep going through no matter how deep it gets) then you can really move forward with all your energy and with renewed confidence.
Having made it through the puddle you know yourself better, others better, you are wiser and you are lighter- no extra load to carry through the next puddle or even down the hill and that's the fun bit- you don't want baggage tipping you off balance at the good bits !!
So what are you waiting for go ride through some puddles!
Lessons from this story
Sometimes you need to 'wing' it.
Challenging yourself is a good thing.
Trying is better than not trying... even if you fail.