Two weeks, two very different bike rides.
Last week I went for a bike ride. It was tough. I got every red light, felt unfit and slightly nauseous, and was so concerned with keeping up with the lycra set who were passing me that my speed was all I could think about. I arrived at my destination hot, bothered and needing a good lie down.
Then yesterday, I went for the same ride—same route, same time of day—only this time I decided that I was going to ‘take it easy’.
I pedalled along at a slower, consistent pace while enjoying the sights, and not only did I get the green lights, I arrived at my destination feeling good and energised and happy.
To my surprise and delight, the second ride was only one minute slower than the first, and I managed to get the same amount of achievements on Strava (a fitness app).
Why am I telling you this? Because I feel like sometimes we rush through life, like the first bike ride. We are so concerned with getting to where we need/want to be and in keeping up with everyone around us that we experience constant stops in our journey, which frustrate us and make us even more stressed. And then, when we finally reach where we want to be, we are so exhausted by the process of getting there that we can’t enjoy where we are.
When we pull back and decide to enjoy the process—like in the second ride—we get to where we want to be in the same amount of time, with the added bonus of having had a more enjoyable journey.
It’s about choosing ease.
Choosing ease goes against what we are taught: things don’t come easy; you have to work hard to get what you want.
But choosing ease doesn’t mean that you sit back and do nothing. It’s about learning to trust yourself and what you need in that moment. It’s a balance of doing the actions you need to do, but also being open to what happens along the way.
It’s effortless effort.
My legs still went round and round on both rides, but the second ride felt effortless because my intention was around enjoying myself, rather than getting to my destination quickly.
I find this is the same in other parts of my life too.
When I try and force a blog post because ‘I must post!’ I experience the biggest writer’s block, but when I choose to enjoy the process of writing the words flow.
When I have been concerned with wanting a relationship, the dates dry up, but when I decide to simply enjoy meeting people I feel spoilt for choice.
So the next time you find yourself pushing towards something and not really getting anywhere, ask ‘how can I find ease right now?’ and notice how your experience changes.