Friday, January 08, 2016

Rusty Rails...

Have you got any rusty rails in your life?
Over the last few months the tram system in Birmingham has been reintroduced right into the city centre.

Previously the system terminated at Snow Hill station, adjacent to my usual commuting trains, but this tram terminus has recently become defunct as the trams now divert around the station and deeper into the heart of the city.

The other morning after alighting from my train, in the darkness of a winter morning, I noticed that the tram lines into the station were developing a fine patina of rust since the trams had stopped running into the terminus.
"A new year is often a reflective time in our lives..."
Of course, if trams started running again tomorrow the rust would very quickly wear off, and otherwise all the infrastructure remains in place to convey the light rail vehicles – the rails remain strong enough, level enough and straight enough to carry the trams.

Have any of your good habits been derailed?
A new year is often a reflective time in our lives as we dwell on the things that really matter to us and perhaps plan how we might adjust our lifestyle in the year to come to achieve health, wealth or happiness goals.

I’m not a great one for resolutions, but having had a shock on the weighing scales after Christmas, I’m introducing more positive eating habits (mainly less alcohol and puddings) since I’d become a little derailed over the last year!

Getting back into my usual working routine after a couple of weeks off over Christmas and New Year has felt a bit disorientating – perhaps you can relate to this. It’s as though the rails have gone a bit rusty and need wearing back in again.
"It’s as though the rails have gone a bit rusty"
When we’re thinking about our dreams, or our resolutions, or habits that have lapsed it’s easy to be put off or disheartened by the rust isn’t it? Perhaps it’s picking up an instrument we’ve not played for a while and realising our fingers aren’t as fast or as resilient as before. Perhaps it’s putting on those running shoes and realising that we’re no longer the elite athlete we once were – whatever it is, it can feel a bit disorienting, like the return to work after a holiday.

But like the tram tracks in Birmingham, all the infrastructure is still there – it’s likely that, even though we may need to go through the motions a little, it won’t take long for the rust to wear off and things to start moving smoothly again. And there’s an encouragement there for us to keep on, little and often, so that the rust doesn’t build up in the first place.

Resolutions are great, but they can be both too big or too vague – and as a result we never get close to them. They remain out there as “someday” goals or results. A book I’ve read recently which is helpful about focusing on what’s important is Gary Keller’s The One Thing. A key conclusion of his is that to really get where we want to go we need to regularly take the time to lay the track, so to speak.
You may be able to go further than you think!
"If you feel that you’re starting the year with rusty rails, take heart!"
He goes into great detail about how to set aside and protect time in our lives so that we can really focus on that “one thing” we really want to do. It’s worth a read and has some helpful advice on bringing those “someday” goals into tangible actions.

So if you feel that you’re starting the year with rusty rails, take heart – you may be able to go further than you think!


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My Random Musings


Moderate Mum said...

I definitely think vagueness ismy biggest downfall. If you don't know your destination whats the point of chugging along. Will check out the tram next time I'm in brum to visit family #FartGlitter

Tubbs said...

It's good to have an idea of where you're ultimately going even if you're not sure how to get there. Just because life comes with detours and bumps in the road :)

Luke Strickland said...

It's good to be specific! Thanks for commenting!

Luke Strickland said...

That's very true - and sometimes the detours and meanders are worthwhile in their own right!