#251: Reaching for Life's Brass Ring
Sunday, March 07, 2010
Remember riding the carousel when we were youngsters?
Round and round and round it went while music played. Some horses were bolted to the floor and didn't move -- better for the really young kids -- while others moved up and down on a silver pole while the carousel went round and round and kids shrieked in delight and parents held on to the youngest ones on their immobile steeds or watched with happy faces from the sides of the ride, waving with joy when their child came around.
Sometimes there was a brass ring attached to another pole off to one side of the carousel. Riders would try to reach out and grab it as they went by. I never saw anyone actually grab the brass ring and so don't know what would have happened if they had. But it held a promise of untold riches to the person fortunate enough to grab it.
Some of us in our daily routines seem to simply go through the motions, like the carousel horses bolted to the floor. Oh, sure, we're moving around in a circle but aren't truly making progress toward a better life.
Some of are making an effort, like the horses that did move up and down while going round and round. But again, is this actually moving forward or simply staying put in one place?
Whether it's a journey of self-improvement, weight loss or better health, standing pat does not move us onward and upward. Anyone can be stagnant and think they are progressing, like walking in place. Sure, it's better than not walking, but doesn't get us anywhere and doesn't use all of our physical functions as does walking on a treadmill or outside or running or biking do.
Making actual progress takes us out of our comfort zones and into areas of dining and exercise unfamiliar to us.
So, when we reach for the brass ring of our fitness journey, will grabbing it lead us toward our goals?
Or will we still be fooling ourselves with the illusion that we're making progress when all we're doing is going round and round, standing still and stagnating?