I run 3 or 4 times a week and on my running map to get to the canal bank I run through a short cut through a housing estate nearby, there are two short cuts, one through the car park and under a tunnel and the other up a little hill through an open gate, which was locked and gated when I began my running a few months ago but the gate is now removed. This is the short short cut.
So every time I start my run I start intending to go up that hill and through the short sort cut and then when I notice I have just run through the car park under the arch way “again” I get annoyed because my body is not following my mind.
I get mesmerized by the scenery and the morning light and fall into a mindless state and in this mindless state my old habits take over and when I pass the exit I notice “Doh! I’ve done it again”!
It doesn’t seem to make any difference which path I take but when I did it this morning I notice the short short cut is a bit sharper as it’s running up a bit of a hill.
So 2 things must be happening. 1st is there is still a gate in my unconscious mind when I think of that path and 2nd this change of path is more uncomfortable than I realised so I am unconsciously choosing the path of least resistance even though just before the run I consciously thought of following the other path.
I can see the same pattern in my own behaviour in business and the people I coach. There is a stated intention of a direction where one want to go ie increase the number of customers etc and then we take the same path we travelled before to get there so we end up short or where we have always been. It’s a bit like running straight while being tied to a pole with an invisible rope. In your mind you think you are running straight but keep running past the same familiar milestones again and again and eventually you realise you have been running round and round the same path. The invisible rope is your past.
When taking on a new direction, you need to wake up, and be here and now with it. And keep being conscious throughout of the here and now. Also then you notice the difference (like I noticed this morning) and you also notice the new challenges more and its different so a bit exiting but scary at the same time because its a new path.