My sixth grade teacher Mrs. Clayton (shout out to Vallemar Middle School in Pacifica), gave me a book of poems by Robert Frost at the end of the school year. In his poem “The Road Not Taken,” Frost writes
“I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
Taking the off-beaten path can be a difficult and challenging journey and one that can be worth the effort. I am a big fan of hiking and being outdoors. While well-groomed pathways can be a lot easier and predictable, I have found that the less-explored routes have led to some of the most awe-inspiring destinations.
Same can be said for the mind. Studies on neuroplasticity of the brain have shown that neural pathways themselves can be restructured and strengthened. I will leave that talk to the experts for now.
In summary, new challenges, whether they be of the body (trying to lose weight, trying to get back in shape, adjusting eating patterns) and/or mind (striving for stress reduction, adjusting sleep patterns, trying to form healthier habits); while difficult initially can make all the difference in the greater span of your life. How has taking a less traveled route (literally, physically or spiritually) helped shaped your life? How might meeting a new challenge today guide you toward a better tomorrow?
4 thoughts on “The Road Less Traveled”
LOVE THIS!!!! We finally made it to South Dakota…I’ll call you soon to download. It was an incredible trip, but I’m hoping Tim and I can repair this week. Off loading the kids for some quality family time and hitting the road for some exploration with him!
Hope you had a wonderful trip to South Dakota. Family time is truly important and a road trip is a great way to focus on each other while exploring and having fun. Thanks for sharing.
For me there are roads that intersect others, roads that seem straight forward, and there are roads that wind through fog and forests filled with dense trees. Some roads even take me through deserts covered with hot sand and nettles. Yet I try my best to follow and abide in my highest sense of Truth and Love. As Truth unfolds, it demands surrendering old ways of thinking, acting, and doing. So I pry open my clenched fists, let go, and listen until I can hear (feel) the still, small voice within me that maps the way. Listening, I trust my heart’s longings, and step by step open to challenges that sometimes feel like huge throne bushes obstructing the way. Surrendering, I climb onward, and cultivate deep humility and unconditional love. It’s not always easy, but if I persevere the journey is awesome!
Saleema, beautifully said. Abiding by your “highest sense of Truth and Love” is a great way to enjoy the journey instead of getting caught up in the destination. Yes it is not always easy and yet perseverance has its rewards. Thank you for commenting and sharing.