Why Bother Driving the Speed Limit?
It has been one year since I had a speeding ticket. Of course I remember the embarrassment of last year when I got pulled over by a policeman. Yet, the moment of shame along with the consequences of a $90 ticket and a slight raise in my insurance rates, only changed my habit briefly. I was stopped once again for speeding, only a few days ago. This time though, the middle aged blue eyed State Trooper was very gracious. He understood my circumstances. I was a fourth grade teacher of 29 students on my way home after a hard day’s work. So, with a generous amount of kindness, he told me to slow down and withheld issuing me a ticket. Whew!
Yet, I have to ask myself, why oh why do I feel the need for speed? Why is it so hard for me to stay within the parameters of the posted speed? How can I alter my ways forever instead of just temporarily?
Change of Habit
Though I once thought it only took 21 days to change any one of my personal bents, I am now reading that it takes up to 63 days. Ridding ourselves of any one of our untamed practices not only involves time, it also includes being patient with ourselves. Perhaps what I need to do before breaking my pattern of speeding is to first rid myself of my inclination toward impatience.
Long term change, I know, is not instantaneous and requires us to shift in more than one area. For instance, when I quit smoking, I took up jogging. The switch from inhaling nicotine to gulping chilly morning air into my lungs, at first seemed foreign to my whole body. But after years of maintaining this routine, it now would be unnatural for me to light up a cigarette and inhale the toxins.
I have to ask myself, is my speeding habit any different? Could it ever be foreign to me to exceed the speed limit? Could this become my new reality?
Perhaps a new mindset is what is needed here. I need to let go of my feeling of being left behind when another car passes me by. I need to replace the thought that I need to be first in line. Since I do not have a reputation for being late, but rather I am known for being early, I really have no excuse to speed anywhere.
Oh, wish me luck. Sixty-three days is a long time to wait for change, but I know speeding is something I need to leave behind.
Why bother to drive the speed limit? No matter our bents, propensities or addictions, we all need to change something. Mine just happens to be the need for speed.