This past weekend, a team of amazing people completed the Ragnar Relay ‘Dacks event. It was pretty great. One of my legs of the relay was about 8.3 miles. The roads ebbed and flowed like the moon was pulling them toward it’s bright face, creating long hilly stretches. The wind blew bitterly cold across my determined face and the darkness swallowed the white noise in my mind. This created a clearing for clarity.
I quickly realized, much to my surprise, I would get from this stretch of miles exactly what I gave. If I brought misery to this leg of the journey, that’s what I was going to get. If I brought awe and wonder, I should prepare to be amazed. If I brought authenticity, I should be ready for illumination of the facts. As I ran, I realized this winding road was honest.
So, I’m out on the road, in the middle of the night and I have this revelation. What am I supposed to do with it? Step after step, I’m wracking my brain for how this God-given clarity is supposed to fit into my life.
Honest. The road is honest. It’s straightforward. Wait, no. It’s not straight. It’s got hills. It curves so often, I’m literally surprised that I haven’t found myself looped around a mile behind where I just was. What’s honest? What IS honest? WHAT IS HONEST? What is HONEST? What is honest in my life? Where is honest? Who is honest?
AH HA MOMENT! I’ve been taking the honest people in my life for granted and spent too much time managing the dishonest people. It can be really easy to mislabel people as honest when they are really just straightforward.
Merriam-Webster says straightforward means this: uncomplicated and easy to do or understand and honest means this: free of deceit and untruthfulness; sincere.
See how different they are? Straightforward people can make a lie uncomplicated and easy to understand, but that doesn’t mean what they are saying is free of deceit and untruthfulness.
I’ve spent some time since that AH HA moment wondering what I’m supposed to do with it. I think I should do something I learned during my 200 hour yoga teacher training. I observe it. I label it. I move on.
- Observe it: I need to be aware of what’s going on in life and all that I interact with. I need to observe the moments or they’ll be taken for granted, as I seems to have done in this situation. This speaks to a larger goal of awareness, present-mindedness and living in THIS moment.
- Label it: I need to be able to discern straightforward people from honest people so that I may discern the information coming from them. I’m not going to engage the straightforward people in my life the way I engage the honest. Life’s too short for that.
- Move on: I need to be ok with moving on from the straightforward people. These people, in my experience, will just suck you dry in whatever part of your life they reside. If at work, they’ll exploit you until you’re dead, or just having a mild breakdown. If in a relationship, they’ll file down your self-worth until you’re a tiny manipulatable nub. If in friendship, they’ll work you to their advantage until there’s no one left but you and them. Moving on isn’t running away or never seeing these people again. It’s choosing not to focus energy in that negative direction any longer.
It’s all well and good to pontificate… but now I gotta go live it.