This part of the path was steep. And the altitude change was severe. I was gasping for breath and trying not to grimace at the ache in my legs as my hiking partner strode up the path in front of me.
He stopped and looked back. I was definitely trailing behind. If his legs were aching the way mine were, his stride didn’t show it. I knew how it felt to hold yourself back to someone else’s pace. I didn’t want to do that to him just because I was out of shape.
“You go on ahead,” I yelled.
He looked reluctant.
“Go. Hike at your own pace. I’ll hike at mine.”
I convinced him to leave me behind. Just because we came together didn’t mean that we had to hike, or walk as I preferred to call it, in the same stride. My friend went on ahead of me and disappeared from sight. I hiked, then rested, then hiked, then rested. Once, I stopped, took off my backpack, and took a nap.
My friend and I joined up toward the end of the day. We made the trek down the mountain together, side by side.
Even though we simplify things, most things are harder than we think. It’s important to let each person go at their own pace. Whether it’s working through an issue or tackling a project in your life, find the pace that works for you. Let others do the same.
Don’t compare yourself to those around you. Let yourself be energized by their pace, but respect the rhythm that works for you.
God, help me know that each of us has our own rhythm for getting through life. Help me honor and enjoy the rhythms that work for me.
From the book: More Language of Letting Go
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