There is a joy in the journey
There's a light we can love on the way
There is a wonder and wildness to life
And freedom for those who obey
-Michael Card (From the song: Joy in the Journey)
Do you ever have those times when you're driving from one place to another and you get so lost in your own head that when you arrive, you don't even remember the trip? You saw the road. You stopped at lights. You waited for other cars. But it was all done at such an unconscious level that you can't really recall any of it.
On this race of life that we are running it is easy, especially when we're remembering it's a long haul and focusing on our breathing and engaging with our running buddies, to miss out on all that we can see and experience and take in while on the journey. My actual running experience introduced me to sights and sounds and smells that I otherwise never would have enjoyed. Running new trails allowed for a constant introduction of new discoveries. Running the same trails again and again allowed me to note growth and development and changes of seasons in ways that otherwise go unobserved.
But I also got lost in my head a lot. I saw the sign commemorating a historic church several times, but never paused (or went back) to read it or see the site. I can't even remember where I saw it now and regret missing out. And that is a rare thing that I know I missed out on. Most often, we have no idea just what beauty and uniqeness we have missed out on because we were so inside our own head that we ran right by.
Don't wake up tomorrow (or next year or decades from now) and realize that you missed out on getting to know the people closest to you or places you live and visit. Read the signs. Have the conversations. As you run today - this week - take time to look around and take it in.
Don't just run the race. Enjoy the journey it takes you on.