I was driving along a busy road in Auckland and pulled up to an intersection where a traffic light that had just turned red. I had a good friend of mine in the car and I let out an audible growl when I saw the light turn red. He looked at me and said “a bit stressed there are you Hogman” and I replied yeah, I am. He said “did you want to get through that light and now you feel stuck” and My answer was again a resounding YES.
Then he looked at me and asked the weirdest question. He said “what if the traffic light was actually speaking to you”?
At this point I looked at him with the you’re crazy look. “What if the traffic light was giving you an opportunity to reconsider your journey”? “You may want to turn left, you may want to go right or you may want to turn around and go back the way you came”?
This lesson from a traffic light talking to me has provided me with a backbone to pausing and reflecting on my life, my decisions and my relationships over time and helps me particularly when I am looking ahead into an uncertain future to grasp the greatest clarity that I can before I make my next move….
Since that life changing discussion I now try to use every traffic light as my ‘pause’ and consider moments. Sometimes I look around at other people and wonder what’s going on in their minds however mostly I pause and think about where I am going and where I ‘should’ be going.
It was a little later that I hit a red light that gave me the opportunity to reconsider my life. In fact the red light was actually a brick wall. More on that later…