motivational mondays – snow driven


It’s January. With January comes winter. With winter comes snow. With snow comes fun commutes. With fun commutes comes hydroplaning, skidding semi-stops and driving your cop car backward off a steep embankment (see: Die Hard).

While this taciturn white precipitation lies silently in wait, eagerly anticipating the next unsuspecting automobile operator to overcompensate on a skid, there isn’t a day goes by where people don’t bitterly complain about driving in the snow.

To them I say: shut up and pay attention.

a brief summation about why we should love driving in the snow

Driving in the snow ain’t so bad. Right up front, here are a few distinct advantages:

  • Keeps your senses alert and your mind/body in tune with your actions
  • Places you more in the moment
  • Challenges you
  • Allows you to run red lights pseudo-legally
  • Allows you to be late for work and have a valid excuse
  • Allows you to sleep in and be “accidentally” late for work (see above)

See? Advantages galore.

The reality of the situation is this: driving in the snow is a minor frustration, nothing more. Like any so-called minor frustration, if we view it negatively, our stress levels rise, we become angry, and toxic emotions rise to the surface, inhibiting the potential to live a joyful life. But like anything else, when viewed from a positive light (such as the reasons above . . . well, the first three anyway), the endorphins begin to flow, our minds become more alert and our synapses fire a little bit faster, increasing our reaction speed to possibly dangerous situations and allowing us to appreciate life just a little bit more.

Snow, like rain, is a natural part of life that many of us allow to negatively affect our moods day in and day out. Why can’t we simply embrace the natural course of the seasons instead of shunning them? Why can’t we be grateful that something as simple as precipitation does fall, granting life to everything around us, including ourselves?

a brief summation about why we should love life

Come on – you knew I had to make the correlation to daily living eventually!

Rainer Maria Rilke said in Letters to a Young Poet, “…that something is difficult must be a reason the more for us to do it.” Life should be difficult. Anything worth attaining should not just be handed to us, but rather earned through hard work and toil, through blood, sweat and tears. As the Buddhists say, “Life means suffering,” and those who do not suffer can never know what it is to be truly content (not that difficult work implies suffering, but for many it can sometimes be the case).

In this modern age of advanced technology and countless conveniences, this can be a hard mentality to adopt: everything is just so easy. We can fly across the United States in just a few hours. We can heat up cold food in a microwave. We can keep warm in the middle of January in Minnesota without huddling around a big hearth fire. We can get surgery on our eyes to get perfect vision. Plastic surgery. Television. Electricity. Snow blowers. Planes, trains and automobiles. Daily life has turned from hardship to easy in a matter of just a couple hundred years. And so many of us take advantage without even realizing it, myself very much included.

This ease of living, this convenience, can prove a very dangerous thing indeed, for it can make us lazy.

If we let it.

There’s a certain mentality that says if you’re doing something and it’s easy then you’re probably doing it wrong. We fall into lulls, we become complacent, we stop trying to improve ourselves: mentally, physically, emotionally, spiritually. Complacency is the worst type of crime. The people we quote on Facebook did not earn the right to be quoted on mere presence alone.

Doing what I do now – writing – I have to motivate myself every day to sit down, eliminate distractions, and put words down on a blank page. Day in and day out. As much as I love writing, it’s the hardest thing I’ve had to do all my life. And by that fact, coupled with my passion, I understand that it’s worth it.

So the next time we do something difficult, the next time we drive to work in the snow, realize that the difficult gets easier with practice. With hard work. With living in the moment and bettering ourselves each and every day in some small way.

So let’s head out onto that snow-packed pavement and just drive.



2 Responses to “motivational mondays – snow driven”

  1. mpavia211 Says:

    This is a really good, thought-provoking post. It motivates me to (try to) stay positive under any and all circumstances. I’m going to have to re-read this in March when I leave Costa Rica to return to what will almost definitely still be a snowy winter in Cleveland.

  2. the importance of disconnecting « livin' like a freebird Says:

    […] livin' like a freebird cynical realism for the common man « motivational mondays – snow driven […]

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