John Murphy's Blog


The Overlooked JOY of Coasting

A few weeks ago I was flipping across channels and stumbled into a post race interview with some zen like Nascar driver--I forget which one--The interviewer asked a question he expected a different answer to. He asked what the driver liked to do when he wasn't racing and instead of opting for the more traditional, thrill-seeking type answers like mountain climbing, deep sea fishing, or alligator wrasslin', he opted for a simple but poignant answer.

 " I like to COAST "

He went on to explain that in his line of work he spends all his time between the brake and the accelarator, so in his off time it feels good to coast.

It does feel good to coast and race drivers aren't the only ones who spend the bulk of their time between braking and accelerating--That's what MOST of us do everyday. We run fast and far. We run with scissors. We run like chickens with our heads cut off, so much so, that even chickens would be embarassed for us.

It is only when we coast, that we open ourselves to dreams, to ideas, to solutions. It is easier to love and breathe in Life when we coast. It is easier to drink in the joy when we're not racing at 220 miles an hour.  As a wise fisherman(who is also my father in law) told me on a Northern Wisconsin Lake a few Augusts ago: The fish aren't the reward. The fishing is. :)

This zen-line stock car racer had one additional, Brad Paisley-esque remark to make on the subject.

"We're all just going around in circles anyway "


I don't plan on stomping on the brakes this weekend or even over the next few years but I may learn to throttle back and learn to embrace the overlooked joy of coasting.

In a lesson I once learned from my, at the time 4 yearold niece: weeeeeee !


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