May 10, 2012
Another minute ticks away, and I can’t help but notice the sun’s final rays retreating to lands beyond. The heat that must accompany a warm New Orleans Spring day as such is no consequence to me because of my air conditioned room.
It’s Thursday night. I know I should write another article for my blog, but I just don’t have the energy. From the television, Alex Trebek enlightens me with new tid-bits of knowledge that will soon disappear from my mind like the minutes that tick away from my time.
My legs stretch before me with an acceptable excuse that my left foot must be above my heart to discourage blood from settling in the foot of my injured left leg. If my foot hangs down too long, the discoloration in my toes remind me that my body isn’t working normally. My calf muscle which usually assists in sending the blood back to my heart is blocked from movement by the cast. It’s forced into inactivity to allow healing of my Achilles tendon.
It’s ok though, because I’m comfortable.
The inactivity in my leg breeds the inactivity in my mind. However, the inactivity of my mind doesn’t result in a discoloration of an appendage, it results in lethargy of my being.
It’s ok though because I have an excuse. I have to rest while my Achilles tendon heals.
But why does the inactivity of my body directly result in the inactivity of my mind? That’s it, it shouldn’t! However, our bodies and minds are undoubtedly connected and when we stop one, the other one usually follows.
I believe things happen for a reason. For too long, I’ve waited around in my comfortable corporate job and hoped to someday have something more. This was a hope that was only backed up by inactivity and no pursuit.
My legs have been stretched out before me while I ride my bike with my feet on the handle bars. I haven’t been chasing my dreams because I’ve been comfortable. Things have come easy, and I’ve proven to be a success at work. However, I’ve told my wife that I feel like I could do so much more.
And then my legs are taken out from underneath me. Literally. Many people have experienced this same thing through other methods – layoffs, down-sizing, or other health issues. It makes sense, if I’m not even using my legs to chase, why do I even need healthy legs? I can just continue to ride my bike with my feet on the handle bars and be comfortable!
My dreams of pursuing my mission can wait until I’m not so comfortable! Is the purpose of my life, to not do anything that challenges me to the point that I might fail?!
Can you hear my loudening tone?? Can you feel my intensity as I get worked up about this?? Can you feel me ready to give my BATTLE CRY??
Well guess what, it’s not me creating the excitement inside you right now. It’s not me increasing your heartbeat and increasing your anger for shelving that dream. It’s you.
Ralph Waldo Emerson put it this way, “The youth gets together his materials to build a bridge to the moon, or, perchance, a palace or temple on the earth, and, at length the middle-aged man concludes to build a wood shed with them.”
We embrace inactivity and comfort and are satisfied with our wood shed. If things are going ok with work, and we’re happy with our personal lives, we embrace it. There’s nothing wrong with it. I’m incredibly happy with my relationships, current situation, and I feel very fortunate to have my job. So why can’t I leave well enough alone???
Well, my legs already got knocked out from me once; I’m afraid the next hint will be even less subtle.
I fought the inactivity tonight. One step at a time. I didn’t realize these emotions were stirring in me until I forced myself to start writing. I wanted to watch my TIVO’d “The Daily Show” from last night, but instead I forced myself to write.
In The Call, Oz Guinness wrote, “What is undeniable is that when comforts and convenience sap our energies and idealism, inactivity secretes sloth into our minds like a poison in the blood.”