I love the movie Office Space. Back in the days when I was in high-tech, it was funny for so many of it’s detailed accuracies about my work life. But today I found myself thinking back to the opening scene, when Peter (played by Ron Livingston) was trapped in traffic on his way to work. When he saw that another lane was moving faster, he’d change to that lane thinking he could get ahead. But then that lane would stop, the lane he was just in would open up. He’d change back to that, and what do you know, he’d get stuck there again. What he wanted was to move forward, but traffic wasn’t letting him go any faster regardless of which lane he was in. It was frustrating to say the least, and I’m sure we could all relate to the traffic scenario, especially in Austin, TX!
The thing about this scene that strikes me differently today is that a lot of us (myself included) look for the “fast lane”–the quick fix for whatever ails us physically, mentally, or emotionally. The pill that will let us sleep or take our pain away. The move across the country that will make us into a different person, that will make us feel like we “belong”. We aren’t content with where we are in the moment, or with our present circumstances. Even if we’re in a good place, a lot of us want to “continuously improve”. We often don’t understand that where we are might be exactly where we’re meant to be, and that despite all our attempts and energies at changing, the Universe has a grander plan for us. We try our hardest to get “out” when anything starts to become uncomfortable, and we often have little trust. We won’t recognize that we may not be moving forward as fast as we’d like to because there is some other lesson we’re meant to learn first. We’re so busy trying to get out of our present situation that we’re not looking at the value of where we are.
So maybe Peter was supposed to be stuck in traffic that day. Maybe the delay stopped him from becoming part of a devastating accident. Maybe it would have allowed him to collect his thoughts about an upcoming, important meeting. Maybe it would have been a great opportunity to practice patience and compassion for others. Or maybe the time could have been used to deepen his breath.
I’m working on trusting that despite feeling lost a good portion of the time, the circumstances I find myself in, the people I meet, and the experiences I have (whether I label them as “pleasant” or “unpleasant”) are for my greater good. I’m trying to be “in” that space, the space of the present moment, the here and now, and to trust my life and my path. Finally.
I won’t say I’m very good at it, but I’m trying to create some space, some allowing, that there is a greater purpose for everything I’ve gone through and will go through in this lifetime. What about you? Do you sometimes find it challenging to trust too? I’d love to hear your thoughts.