Momentum is our proof of life!
These last few months sitting at home on the couch have eroded more than my waist line. My get-up-and-go is gone, too. I’m wondering how to restore some healthy momentum in the wake of binging on Netflix and potato chips. Staying home and apart isn’t the only reason we’ve lost momentum. Heartache, depression, grief, and pain also set us up –to slow us down.
How long will we wait for life to begin again? We bargain with life, promising “I’ll get going when I get a better job, when I’m in a better relationship, when I feel better, when the world is better…” There’s no better time than NOW. We’ve always been a human-kind that chases dreams, crosses deserts, climbs mountains, and moves forward. Our God-given heart beat insists we keep going – and growing. Momentum is our proof of life!
Momentum doesn’t build by rushing out to make up for lost time. Healthy momentum actually emerges by slowing down. Seriously? Yes, but in a totally different way than how we’ve been living recently. How can slowing down build momentum!? Slowing down does not deny how precious life is. It pays attention to how precious every moment is.
What do moments have to do with momentum? These words have a practical kinship because the word momentum is the 14th century Latin root of the word moment.
Here are four momentum-makers.
1) See the potential for your ordinary moments to be extraordinary.
Sure, make a plan. Set a goal. Work toward it. But in spite of your plan, look around and drink in the extraordinary nature of the moments of your life. The true meaning of a moment isn’t in the moment itself. It lies in how you orient your heart and soul towards it. See moments as secret agents that can decode the true meaning of your life. That’s how you’ll find momentum.
2) Swap out your bucket list for a “life-list”
My problem with bucket list mentality is it feels driven by the fear and pressure that time is running out. And that’s not where momentum thrives.
There were times in my life when I didn’t know if I’d live or die. I planned my recovery with promises to write another book, travel to Israel, and maybe raise llamas! Last time I was in a life threatening position, something changed. I stopped regretting what I hadn’t done and began to feel God nudge me to live not like I was dying, but to live like I was living.
3) Live as if you have all the time in the world
Most of us feel “there aren’t enough hours in the day.” We love shortcuts, express lanes, and rapid rewards. The problem is, a faster abbreviated life is less of a life.
If you occasionally live like you have all the time in the world, instead of taking the angry commute to and from work you might take the refreshing scenic route home. When you drive through to get your coffee or Dunkin Donut pull over for just a moment and enjoy it as you feed your body and soul. Slow down and see what you’ve been missing and you will build sustainable momentum.
4) Embrace what’s familiar in an unfamiliar, new, way
Familiarity feels good. When our brains recognize something familiar they release a small hit of the feel-good chemical, dopamine. Whereas new experiences can feel like lifting a refrigerator. Our brains stretch. Our brain chemistry goes a bit crazy – as do we. So we avoid uncomfortable new experiences. But we need new experiences to develop the life God has created us for. And it’s easy when you embrace your current old routines in a slightly new way. Do what you’re already doing, but do it differently. Do it better!
There will be people who try to stop you. There will be those who don’t understand your momentum. Don’t let them stop you. There will be times you want to quit or give up. But not today – or tomorrow. Because now is the perfect time to build the most meaningful momentum of your life, one moment at a time.