May 21, 2013

What Is YOUR Speed Limit?

Do you know what your speed limit is?
Not the one on the main street closest to your house or on your most frequented routes, but the one that your life is comfortable running on.

Have you ever felt like you were "driving" faster than you could keep up with? 
That your life resembled the autobahn with no limit except your interpretation?
That you might almost lose control on those unexpected curves in life?

Or maybe that you aren't moving at all? 
Stuck in life's "traffic jams" at a standstill-feeling like the progress is so slow it feels as if there in none being made-although the speed limit is greater than zero?!

Let's think about some real speed limits in life.

When there are very little obstructions and distractions and life is "good" per se, we can zoom on down life's road at highway speed, often even using cruise control.
This can be a time to "visit" or relax (sometimes almost falling asleep) and just enjoy the ride.
We don't have to worry about much stop and go.  We aren't even the one pushing the gas pedal.  

Other times there are many busy things going on around us so we are more cautious and use downtown business speed.
For safety of the steady to and fro it requires that we pay added attention and react accordingly, watching diligently for the unexpected. 
This is not a place to be complacent.
This may be the speed we most frequently drive at with stress adrenaline running high.

Residential speed is set for the safety of pedestrians, pets and local traffic.
It is to protect our loved ones.
Especially those who may not be able to protect themselves.
It can get easy in our hustle and bustle in life to forget about these special beings and use the inappropriately dangerous highway speed limit to "rush through life" past our loved ones.

Other times when we are at a learning stage in our lives, we need to remember the 15 MPH
school zone limit.
Yes, it is one of the slower speeds but it too has been established to protect the innocent.
The reduced speed helps us respect the crossing therapist guard whose job it is to safely help his students get to the other side of our (life's) road.

Then there are the exceptions of speed limits.
The temporary.
As is the case in construction zones.
There is a lot of work going on, unusual situations, detours, and human beings working very close in harms way.
There is a double fine (or extremely high one) if caught speeding in a construction zone.
For very good reason.
It is a precarious situation.
Why then when our lives are "under construction" because of an adversity in life do we not offer ourselves those same respectful exceptions and added safety measures?

Perhaps one we use the most is the traffic control one.
The one where we are obstinately obedient and follow the "safe limit" because we are being "watched".
Where our choices are based on whether or not we think we could "get in trouble" .
When integrity is gone and our chances of "being caught" are what determines our behavior.

Since our lives are constantly, unpredictably changing, our most healthy consistent alternative is the variable speed limit.
The one that monitors conditions and changes accordingly as needed. 

Some people grew up in a variable speed home county and follow directions faithfully, knowing that some slowing while driving through life is just temporary and they accept and enjoy whatever the life pace that has been set for them.
Others like me.....
Well, at some point, life's "construction" should have a finishing deadline in place and I, the privilege of enjoying the journey and not just blankly driving to my "destination". 

"No person shall drive a vehicle upon a highway at a speed greater than is reasonable... and in no event at a speed which endangers the safety of persons or property".[19]

"Yes, Officer, I did see the speed limit sign. I just didn't see you." ~Author Unknown

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