We all dig ruts every day of our lives.
What do you think of when someone tells you she is in a rut? Your mind probably conjures up some negative picture like being shackled together with a group of hardened prisoners breaking rocks. You can feel how hot the blazing sun is as you wipe your mind’s brow.
It’s just human nature to think the worst sometimes. Being in a rut has earned that reputation because it is generally spoken about with a sullen voice and an unhappy expression. It sounds about as good as having someone invite you to a yawning festival, but at least you’d get to dream there. Ruts are dream killers, choking the life out of otherwise promising futures.
What exactly is a rut?
Take a look down an unpaved road sometime. If cars travel it, their tires will wear out a path. If the road is rocky, those ruts can help you stay between the trees and out of the ditches. Their purpose is to keep you on the path.
Des that sound like a bad thing?
Here’s something to think about. Ruts are as much habits as they are anything.
Are you in a job you hate? It’s not the only place in the universe to work. But if you’ve been there a while, the pain can be familiar enough that you build a nest in it. If you’ve been in prison a while, you get used to your cell. You know the guards. You’ve gotten accustomed to your cellmate. You’ve accepted the smells, the colors, and the customs of the prison.
So how do you get out?
The key is in your hand. When it hurts more to keep doing what you’re doing than it hurts to change it, you’ll open the cell door.
Since ruts are habits, dig some that will lead you where you want to go. Of course, you’ll have to decide on a destination. Otherwise, you’ll follow your ruts anywhere.
How have your habits served or enslaved you?