For the past two weeks, I have been restoring my Bike E to a ridable condition. It was in a sad state from sitting dormant in my garage since Fall 2015. It needed some serious TLC, two new tires, and an air shock rebuild.
My first ride after the restoration work was genuinely joyous! I had forgotten how much fun and enjoyment I received from riding this somewhat ridiculous bicycle. I asked my wife, usually the family historian, why I stopped riding back in 2015. She had no idea, and neither did I. Some Fall day, I pulled into the garage, put the bike away, and didn’t pull it out again. I also park my car right beside it. All those days, I no doubt saw my beloved Bike E and yet never really thought to take it out for a ride.
Stop Start Continue
One of the coaching exercises I regularly use with my clients is Stop, Start, and Continue. We reflect on what the client could stop doing that is not aligned with their values and goals and start and continue to do that is in alignment. In the future, I may add Restart to my list. What do you need to restart that you used to do that worked for you? As life happens, we often get out of our good habits and do not think to restart them again. But like riding a bike, we never forget how; we don’t remember how satisfying it feels to do those good habit activities.
What have you stopped doing that brings you joy that perhaps you might try restarting?
What Makes Your Inner 10-Year-Old Self Grin?
My friend and flight instructor, Robert Haynes, called and asked if he could borrow my Cessna 177 Cardinal to take his Dad, John Haynes, for a flight. John is 99 years old and has a long and varied aviation career, including being a WWII Navy carrier pilot, airline pilot, aircraft mechanic, and much more. The nice thing about the Cardinal is its large-sized car-type doors. John was quick to jettison his walker, and years of living planeside as an instantaneously top gunner returned to his rightful seat as a pilot in command again. They flew for about forty-five minutes. John piloted the flight except for the landing, which Robert executed.
As you can see from the picture below, the grins were not forced. This is what it’s like to let our ten-year-old inner self come out to play.
John Haynes had an opportunity at 99 years old to restart for forty-five minutes, a flying habit that has brought him a lifetime of joy. It would have been much easier for him to listen to the many excuses I’m sure he thought of when Robert asked if he wanted to fly again. He chose YES! and that made all the difference in the world.
Toward Away Exercise
In my airplane there is a navigational instrument that is rapidly becoming obsolete thanks to GPS, called a VOR receiver. VOR stands for Very High Frequency Omni-Directional Radio Range. As a pilot navigates towards a ground-based radio transmitter, the instrument points in the direction to fly to the transmitter. Once you overfly the transmitter, the instrument shows the direction you are flying away from the signal. This is very similar a powerful exercise I use with my coaching clients based on the work of Dr. Russ Harris, MD.
The Toward Away exercise is pictured above and lists the actions one can choose to take that will keep them on a course that honors their values and leads them towards living the life they desire to experience. We also list the behaviors they may do that take them away from their desired, well-lived life. We always have a choice of how we want to act in any situation. If this interests you, please get the Second Edition of Russ Harris’ book, “The Happiness Trap.”
I still don’t understand why I stopped riding my Bike E. What I do know is how good I feel to be riding it again. I’m grateful for the chance for a restart.
How about you? What do you need to restart doing that is in alignment with your values so you can enjoy being on course for experiencing your well-lived life?
If you are not sure what you really value or want to think through your restart options, please click here to schedule some time with me to think and talk together.