An experienced motorcycle rider makes it look effortless… smoothly shifting gears. New riders shift with a jerky motion but with time and practice, shifting becomes so natural that eventually they don’t even think about it. Shifting gears allows the motorcycle to run with optimal power. It’s matching gear speed with road speed.
We need to shift in our lives too. We need to match our gear speed with our road speed. If you’re in the fast lane in life, you’ll need to be in a higher gear. You’ll need more energy, more organization, more power. Likewise, if you’re slowing down, you’ll need to be in a lower gear.
There are two indicators that when monitored will alert you when it’s time to shift…
Watch the RPMs
I’m sure you’ve heard of redlining. It’s easy to see it on a tachometer, simply look for the red line. You don’t want to get your engine RPMs running so high that you pass the red line. This happens and your engine will blow. Redlining puts stress on the engine. Where do the RPMs run high in your life? Too many hours at work. Excessive kids activities. Maxed out credit cards. Strained relationship with your spouse. Demanding new job. Taxing volunteer work. No time to go to the gym. These cause stress in your life… it’s time to shift.
Listen to the engine.
I’ve become so in tune to the rumble of my engine that without looking at the gauges, I know when to shift. In 2007, I instinctively knew something wasn’t right in my life. I was working 60 hours a week, going mach 10 with my hair on fire and my family was getting my emotional leftovers. I was a guilty mom and an absent wife… completely failing as a wife and mother. The way my engine was running, I knew it was time to shift. As a result, I slowed my engine at work, down shifted to 40 hours a week, which allowed me to upshift and spend more time at home.
Do you need to downshift at work?
Maybe you just took a new position and need to upshift at work?
Do you need to upshift in your marriage by starting date night?
Do you really need to chair that bake sale committee and be a board member for a local non-profit?
Does your child really need to be in band, piano lessons, basketball, scouts, AND archery?
Downshift in your finances by making coffee at home instead of buying a $5 latte every morning.
Shifting in life is making a decision to change something that will provide you more time, money, growth, peace of mind, or fulfillment. It could be as simple as getting a massage or pedicure. It could be as radical as quitting your job, selling your home, and moving to a seaside village.
If your RPMs are running high and your engine is reaching it’s maximum speed, it’s time to shift. If you don’t shift, you will blow the engine. Take a look at your gauges, listen to the rumble of your engine… is it time to shift?