When You Think You’re Moving Backwards… Hold…
It’s safe to say for the past year, I have felt like I am moving backwards. This will surprise most people because on the outside, I always look like I’m paving my own path, plowing ahead, #livingmybestlife. I live in New York, Pensacola, sometimes I like to travel abroad and drink wine in France, and on my off-days I bake cookies from scratch and workout like a beast!
But… at the end of the day I am also human, and I also know I fill my life with activities especially when I don’t know what I’m supposed to be doing next. I have always set goals for myself and ALWAYS achieved them. But, something happened this past year. I was excelling at my goal, and when it stopped being my goal… I didn’t know what to achieve next.
There is nothing wrong with achievement, but there is a lot wrong with defining yourself by achievement. You begin to lose sight of who you are without that achievement, and you get caught in the cross hairs of “moving backwards.” Have you ever tried to go up on a down escalator or walk on a treadmill that is set at a run pace?? I have quite literally done both of these things, and while hilarious to watch, I encourage you to let the imagery sit with you for a second. What is happening in that moment? I am trying to push forward towards something I was never meant to push forward towards (that was a mouthful!)
Society tells us to keep achieving, especially as women! We have to keep pushing for the next career move, the next relationship goal, the next “being all that we can be.” We push against a current, that we are supposed to sit still in, and we get lost in this concept of “moving backwards.” When you feel like you are moving backwards or even worse like you’re standing still, hold on to that moment. For it is in this moment, that purposeful change is happening, and you are too busy, frustrated or stubborn to see it.
When I moved to Pensacola, I joined the Pensacola Rowing Club. Now, let us be very clear, I knew nothing about rowing! I had a fear of water basically my whole life. A not so wise lifeguard thought the best way to teach me how to swim at age 5 was to throw me in the water… he learned very quickly after a swift kick in the shins, that was a poor decision… but I digress!
When I moved to Pensacola, I made a pact with myself that I would face my fears head on instead of saying “no” to every little thing. Sooo I joined the rowing club. One of many lessons I learned about rowing is in order to move to the next destination in the water, it is often important to stay still or to even row backwards while your partner is rowing forwards. This can create a circular pattern to move you in a new direction that would not be possible without the joint effort.
Now stay with me… you all know my faith is my rock. I wholeheartedly believe, God has been asking me for a very long time to stop rowing and let Him steer me to the next direction. I have always worked hard to achieve any and every goal, but sometimes I worked so hard, that I stopped working for God and started working for myself. This seeming backwards movement, is not backwards at all. It is purposeful, it is meaningful, it is my moment that I run the risk of missing, if I don’t allow myself to hold. Hold, and ignore the thought that “I am moving backwards,” but instead remember, God is moving forwards.