Giving Space

'Goddamn traffic...I'm late for my meditation class.'

We all need it, but have a hard time giving it:  Space.

I was rear-ended the other day driving through town on my way to work.  I could almost see it coming.  People pushing, not wanting others to move into “their” lane when construction closed a lane.  And, of course, naturally, EVERYONE is in a hurry and THEIR time is Much More Important than Yours, or Mine (didn’t you know?).

I stop at a light (instead of blocking the intersection, as many do).  Bump!  Hit from behind.

I kept calm, set the brake, got out, walked back, stared at the lady (who of course did not roll down her window. . .who, of course, did not apologize, and who, of course, could not back up because the car behind HER was too close!).  I saw that there was only a small dent in my bumper so I waved her back saying (not yelling but speaking firmly):  “Stay back!”  I got back in and the traffic inched along.  I wonder if she learned anything?

I learned good driving from my dad a long time ago.  If someone was behind him, he would pull over and let them pass.  If someone needed help by the side of the road, he would stop.  If traffic is merging, You Take Turns and let people in!  (You learn that in Kindergarten, right?).  For my dad, being courteous on the road is just what you DO.  This was his “old-fashioned” philosophy.  And I learned from dad not to tailgate.  You keep a respectful and safe distance behind the car in front of you.  Simple common sense.  How will you stop if they suddenly brake?  What if they stall or there’s an emergency and you’re so close you can’t move over or get around their car?  And how do YOU feel when someone is “riding your tail, hanging on your bumper”?

There are so many obvious life lessons related to simple driving skills, I’m not going to go into them here.

I could talk about people I have worked with who apparently Never Learned to Give Space, the Very Space they Demand for Themselves.  Working with that can be So Frustrating!  (Great, I “get to be their dad.”  Isn’t THAT fun!).

So, I take a breath, remember dad’s “naive” (but much less stressful) way of living, and people tell me I’m pretty patient and courteous (most of the time), that I’m a good driver.  Well, great, thanks.  Now, let’s pass the word!  Let’s “take it to the streets”!

Here, I’m calling attention to space.  Giving others some space, giving yourself some space to be less stressed.

Simply calling attention. . .which is the Real Point, isn’t it?  Calling Attention.  Paying Attention.

We have a Lot to PAY!

Oh, and, Drive Safe out there, Ok?

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4 thoughts on “Giving Space

  1. Yes, indeed, Mike. And in my area, an epicenter of meditation, yoga and hundreds of spiritual self-help brands to choose from, the cartoon was particularly right on. Now, get out of my way, God’s on my cell! Ha. Be safe and well.

  2. I don’t drive, but I get similarly frustrated with pedestrians. When people walk abreast and expect me to step out onto the road to pass them. When they’re standing on the street together, but not all on one side so you have to weave through them like an obstacle course, or they leave no gap at all.

    I was once standing on a bus with friends and when we were pulling up to the stop, I moved across beside them so people could get passed us. In a beat, one of them moved to where I had been to continue the conversation. I still give out to him about it!

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