One of the things I find most fascinating about life are the sometimes unpredictable, yet very valuable, life lessons learned when you least expect them.
It may seem silly when you read that title, but my treadmill has taught me some profound life lessons worth holding onto.
Still curious? Here’s what I’ve learned …
Valuable Life Lessons In The Most Surprising Places
Lesson # 1: Just Get Moving!
Do you have a dream in your heart you’d love to see happen, but you feel stuck with a lack of purpose? Does it seem like life is passing you by while everyone else is living?
Maybe it’s time to consider: What can I do today that will bring me one step closer to living the life I long for?
Even if the step you can take today is small, it’s still forward momentum! Don’t despise small beginnings. In time, your faithfulness, dedication and perseverance turn into big blessings.
I’m a self professed dreamer, so I get it. The problem we can create is that we run into “analysis paralysis;” too many options and too few plans to make any of them actually happen!
Recently on Instagram I shared a quote that I love. It reads, “Of all the liars in the world, sometimes the worst are our own fears.” – Rudyard Kipling
In life, I’ve found that with anything, the first few steps are the hardest!
Consider a baby attempting to walk the first few tries. You can expect some wobble and falls as they attempt to stand on their own two feet.
As mature adults, we experience ‘our first steps’ all over again. At this stage in life, it may be a little harder. We’ve experienced the bumps, bruises and bangs life can throw our way. We’d rather not experience that hurt again.
The thing about fear is that it will paralyze us into inaction if we’re not careful. It will rob us of all that we could have done, could have been and ever dreamed of being.
When we take that first step and just get moving – our fear becomes less of a giant and more of a stepping stone to greater. – Holly ♥ #fear #lifelessons #getmovingTweet
We realize that we really do hold the power to shape and transform our lives no matter what lie the fear is trying to feed us.
We see that with each step forward, we are closer than we were one step prior.
We begin to realize that we may not be where we want to be, but because we are moving, at least we’re on our way there!
What dream has been lying dormant in your heart? What small step can you take right now to bring you that much closer to it becoming your reality?
Lesson # 2: Just Keep Walking!
I’m not going to pretend that I don’t sometimes wish for the easy button in life! I’ve been plenty guilty of wishing for that ‘instant fix’ to a troubling situation.
The problem with this theory of instant gratification is that there is power in your perseverance!
Patience and perseverance have a magical effect before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish.John Quincy Adams
Perseverance and consistency produce growth in us like few other things can. Ever heard the saying, “Nothing worth having will ever come easy?” You & I both know it’s true, even when we wish it weren’t.
Sometimes, just like it is on a treadmill, we have to simply keep walking by faith, even when we don’t yet see the ‘results’ (or answers) we desire.
We can’t see the results of better health, more limber joints and less tense muscles or weight loss right away, but we can trust by faith that if we keep persevering, we will reach our goal.
We may not always feel like pushing through the pain or discomfort in this life. Some days we may not understand why we are walking the path we are.
The road may seem terribly dark and uncertain. Fear might be trying to grip your very soul. Just keep walking!
It reminds me of this Scripture:
As for us, we have all of these great witnesses who encircle us like clouds. So we must let go of every wound that has pierced us and the sin we so easily fall into. Then we will be able to run life’s marathon race with passion and determination, for the path has been already marked out before us.
We look away from the natural realm and we fasten our gaze onto Jesus who birthed faith within us and who leads us forward into faith’s perfection. His example is this: Because his heart was focused on the joy of knowing that you would be his, he endured the agony of the cross and conquered its humiliation, and now sits exalted at the right hand of the throne of God!Hebrews 12:1-2 (TPT)
Though at times we feel like we are simply ‘spinning our wheels’ and nothing is changing, just keep walking.
If we are steadfast, choosing faith over fear, we will see the manifestation of that which we have believed for.
The results of your faith may not be instantaneous. It may not happen when we’d like for it to.
Just keep walking…. the answer is on the way!
Lesson # 3: There Will Be Ups and Downs
Oh yeah my friend, life has an ‘incline’ button too! Have you ever tried one of the pre-programmed workouts on a treadmill? Or boosted the incline to 7+?
It’s hard & it hurts! But here’s the interesting part…
The harder the challenge, the greater the results.
There have been times when that incline or speed increased and I thought, “There’s no way I can do this!” But I could and I did.
Self doubt kicks in and we start to allow the word “can’t” into our thoughts and our words. If we aren’t careful to kick can’t to the curb, our actions will follow through until our reality reflects a “can’t mentality.”
- We may have to make sacrifices along the way.
- We may have to examine and fix some of our limiting beliefs.
- Certain relationships may need to be let go of.
- We may need to move to get away from toxic people and situations.
- Or perhaps we have to make a decision that is necessary but not easy.
Whatever the cost, it could never cost more than living with the regret of choosing “comfortable and familiar” over “chaotic but victorious.”
Lesson # 4: Our Pace Is Our Own
A flower does not think of competing with the flower next to it. It just blooms.Zen Shin
We are one-of-a-kind masterpieces. How then do we dare to compare our journey or our pace to anyone else?
We can’t. Let me rephrase: we can but we won’t get an accurate picture of where we actually are on our own journey or who we are meant to be and what we are called to do.
If I take my eyes off of the race set before me while trying to look at you, I’m going to stumble and fall.
I’m going to lose what’s great about me while trying to either be you or outdo you.
Some of our greatest blessings come by learning from those ahead of us and teaching those behind us. – Holly ♥ #lifelessons #motivationTweet
Trying to keep up with a pace that was never created for us brings a burden of stress we can’t carry. We crack under the immense pressure. Why?
It’s not your pace or your race. You can’t carry what you were never designed for. You have been equipped for your journey and no one else’s.
Lesson # 5: What Powers You?
Of all the valuable life lessons learned from my treadmill, this is one of my favorites.
Treadmills are either electric or self propelled. Either way, if there’s no power, there’s no potential.
You know what it’s like to have your energy tank running on ‘E.’ Your ‘get up and go’ is gone.
There are seasons in life that leave us feeling this way; powerless, hopeless, full of fear, doubt, worry and insecurity. This world is experiencing such a time right now as I write this.
So, where does your power come from when everything seems to fall apart?
For me, it’s my relationship with Holy Spirit and His life-giving love. Prayer is power, my friend.
Lesson # 6: Sloooooow Down!
A push outside of our comfort zones is what we need occasionally. You know how it is – we get stuck in our routines and forget to actually live life!
One of the biggest problems I see today is this idea that busyness equals productivity. It doesn’t.
The more frazzled we become by our ‘just say yes culture,’ the less we actually achieve. Overwhelming amounts of stress are killing us and the burdens of unrealistic expectations rob our relationships and contentment.
Scientists studying brain scans recently discovered that moments of creativity take place when the mind is at rest rather than working on something. And since creative approaches are so crucial to success, workaholics are working themselves out a job.Neuroscience: Relaxing Makes You More Creative
There are times when I hit my stride on the treadmill and keep a swift pace. Other days, I need a relaxing, leisurely walk.
Life off of the treadmill isn’t much different. We need to not only acknowledge how we feel but give value to it.
At times, life can be a delicate balance between going with the flow or simply saying no. – Holly ♥ #stress #justsayno #lifebalanceTweet
Lesson # 7 – Don’t Bite Off More Than You Can Chew
If I am only able to maintain a speed of around 2mph and I set it for 8mph instead – I’m going to get seriously hurt!
If I can only do 1 mile without feeling like I’m going to keel over, it’s best I not try for that 2nd or 3rd mile…yet!
Setting smaller goals are a great way to build up self-worth and a belief in yourself. These are goals you can achieve today that will help you realize you can achieve your big goals too.
- You may not be able to do 2 miles yet, but maybe you can handle 1.5 miles
- You’d like to have an extra $500 in your savings account but all you can afford today is $25. That’s okay – start there!
- You’d like a better marriage but it feels impossible. Show an act of love or kindness today that will set the tone for change
- You’d love a successful business. What are your biggest roadblocks to success? Research ways to creatively solve those problems! Each problem eliminated makes the unattainable nature of your dream that much smaller 🙂
Every little thing we do to replace, “I can’t” with, “I did it!” boosts our confidence that we already have everything we need to be successful.
Ever wondered how to get motivated to start? Set a goal and do it!
When we accomplish a goal we’ve set out to do, our brains release dopamine, the chemical responsible for a “high” of feel goodness.
Every time you complete a reward-motivated behavior, more dopamine gets released. Now you’re on a roll of achievements and look back to realize just how far you’ve come!
Long-term goals are critical for clarity. Short term goals are critical for confidence. – Holly – wholenesshaven.com ♥ #goals #confidenceTweet
Life Is A Journey of Loving and Learning
Some of our most valuable life lessons come in ‘hard pills to swallow.’ It’s not always easy to face challenges head-on. Fear would have us stop walking, stop trying and just accept defeat.
It can be discouraging at times when we try to face our fears and find that they still get the best of us sometimes. Believe you me, I understand.
What matters is we don’t stop walking and moving forward. One of my favorite quotes is this one:
What valuable life lessons can you share with me that you too have experienced in unusual places? I love hearing your thoughts.
If this post got you thinking or helped you in some way, please share with your social media family. Thank you! ♥
Sending You All My Very Best Love and Well Wishes,