straight railroad tracks

“The train is roaring toward you
and the villain is twirling his mustache
and you’re fussing that he’s tied you
to the tracks with the wrong kind of rope.”

~Robin McKinley~

Bad things happen every day without warning, however, sometimes you can see them coming like a train down the tracks. At that moment of realization that an inevitable “bad thing” is going to happen, what is engaging your time?

There are several ways people react to impending gloom and hard times:

  • Ignore it and pretend that nothing is going to happen
  • Recognize it is coming, but get lost in the minutia
  • Give into the circumstance and do nothing
  • Face it full on with a plan

No one handles problems the same every time, however, depending on your personality there is a pattern to how you face bad times or unpleasant events in life. I’m not going to say any of them are “wrong,” but until you face the problem, it can not be fixed or changed.

Ignorance is not bliss when the train is coming and you are tied to the tracks.

“If the track is tough
and the hill is rough,
THINKING you can
just ain’t enough!”

~Shel Silverstein~

The big train is squealing down the tracks towards you with the smoke billowing from the top and a large horn blasting. You’ve already decided to face it full on with a plan – run away from the track. Looking at the steep, dirty climb to get away from the train seems to be quite undesirable because it might ruin your new outfit, chip a nail, break a heel on your shoe or even make you sweat.

So what do you do?

You stand there facing the train fully armed with a plan that you are not going to put into action. It is a great plan without any flaws, however, by not following through with the work and performance, there is no resolution to the bad circumstance nor can you escape the consequences of your inaction.

Doing nothing with an action plan is as unproductive as not having a plan at all and sometimes detrimental.

“You can’t just plan a moment
when things get back on track,
just as you can’t plan the moment
you lose your way in the first place.”

~Sarah Dessen~

railroad tracks

There will be curves in the track of life. Having a plan for your future does not guarantee that the train will run smoothly, on time or that you won’t get tied to the tracks.

Planning is necessary in order to lead your life instead of everything and everyone around you leading your life. However, do not think that just because you have a plan that nothing bad will happen and that everything you plot will come to fruition.

There are a few important points to remember:

  • Have a loose plan that allows for changes. Don’t assign stringent rules of accomplishment that heaps stress on your life thus causing you to be less productive and possibly depressed.
  • The track will change without notice no matter how much you try to control it. You can only control yourself on the track, not all the elements that will affect the track.
  • When the track changes, be prepared with a plan. Think out the situation from all points of view and brainstorm your part in making the plan successful.
  • Rehearse your part in the plan so that it becomes second nature. Making the plan a way of life instead of a last minute effort ensures more successful outcomes and a quicker return to peace.
  • Actions are required to implement the plan. It is the same principle in the fact that you can’t read a book if you don’t turn the pages.
  • Know that the train is going to keep moving with or without you. People will come and go, you’re going to keep getting older and the hands of time will not stop.
  • Even if the train runs you over (metaphorically speaking), get back up and keep trying.
  • You will fail…sometimes, but that is part of succeeding. You can’t know joy if you’ve never experienced sorrow.

You can succeed.

You will succeed as long as you don’t give up.

Head down the tracks of life armed with a plan, patience, determination, humor and believe that you will succeed no matter how many trains come barreling toward you.

All Aboar-r-r-r-r-r-rd!

The Redhead Riter


This post was written by...

Sherry Riter is also known as The Redhead Riter. Sherry is witty, intelligent and addictive as she writes about cooking, family, marriage, failures, blogging tips, art, humor, inspiration, travel, PTSD and aging. Her goal is to inspire, motivate, educate and to make her audience laugh. Sherry embraces being a redhead and helps others to see the redhead point of view…"In some eras redheads were worshipped while others thought us witches. Personally, I like the former and think every day is 'Love a redhead day!'" She can also be found on Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, StumbleUpon, Linkedin, tweeting as @TheRedheadRiter and you can subscribe to her free blog feed.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

1 RetroCollage March 8, 2011 at 6:04 am

I long ago realized that all the bad things that have happened in my life were necessary for the good things to happen as well.


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