Lessons I Learned From My GPS

What could a GPS possibly teach anyone?

I bet you are thinking, what could she possibly be talking about.  Well, we set our GPS for directions to a specific location.  The location is the goal of the trip.

Yikes, Miss GPS told us to turn right, but we went straight. So what happens when we miss a turn?  Miss GPS redirects us.  Now she tells us to turn right, but we get confused and turn left.  What does Miss GPS do now? She redirects us. She wants us and helps us reach our goal whether we miss a turn, make the wrong turn or even change direction.

What is Miss GPS’s reaction?

Does she get annoyed with us or get mad and yell at us? Nope, she stays calm and keeps heading us toward our location (goal), even when the location (goal) changes.   It doesn’t matter how often we miss the turn or change the goal, she stays calm and gives us a new course to follow.

I have to wonder how we handle it when a friend or our kids miss the planned turn?  How do we handle it when the friend, who is perfect for the big promotion, doesn’t apply for some reason? How about when our child, who we want to go to college, decides they don’t want to go? Do we stay calm? Do we help them reach their goals and dreams?

How do I react?

Personally, I know I don’t stay calm. I get worked up.  I may get frustrated with my friend wondering how could she have missed the opportunity of a lifetime, or get upset with my child wondering why he or she decided not to go to college.

If I could handle things like Miss GPS what would I do? I know I would want to help them reach their goals. I would stay calm and redirect or help them redirect towards their own goal.

In the case of my friend, maybe talking with him/her to see why they didn’t apply for that great promotion. That is where I can truly be a friend.  I need to remember it is not my life; I am a bystander (like Miss GPS). My job is to help those I care for continue to their goals, but I need to be understanding and stay calm so I can be helpful.

What can I do?

Maybe my friend, who knows the promotion would be great, really is thinking about making a career change.  I, as Miss GPS, can help them by being there for them.  Maybe help look into classes or offer to provide dinner once a week so she can take those classes. Something to help make it easier for her and her family. It isn’t redirecting my friend but helping find solutions for her to help her get to her goal.

Children are a tough one because we are so close to them. We have seen every misstep throughout their lives, and we want so badly to protect them from any others.  If they veer off course, man, I can get upset and wonder if they lost their brain.   I need to be Miss GPS and stay calm, and help them figure out their next steps (or turns) to help them get where they want to go, not where I want them to go.

How can I help them reach their goals?  I definitely would need to be patient and loving while they figure out what they really enjoy and want to do for the next 30 or 40 years.  Maybe I could help them get information on certain careers or introduce them to people in a career they are interested in so they can talk to them and ask questions.  Perhaps they know what they want to do and I could help them find a great training program.  It is not about my goal but their goal.

Lessons learned

Miss GPS never has her own location (goal) in mind.  It is always about what the driver wants.  The driver may be our friend or our child, but we need to be like Miss GPS, always helping them towards their goal, not ours.

So the lessons we can learn from my GPS are:

  • Stay calm.
  • Be ready to help no matter how many wrong or missed turns there are.
  • Have solid solutions of ways to help others get to their goal.
  • Remember the goal is the driver’s, not ours.

Remember, many times the wrong turns are where the best lessons are learned.

Sometimes they make the best adventures!

What are some other ways we can support our friends and family members, even when we don’t agree with their decisions?

What wrong or missed turns (or opportunities) have you had that ended up being a great experience?

Leave a comment!!!


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Posted in Emotional Health, Healthy Living, Relationships.