Running Against the GrainI decided to run the other way.

There is an odd thing in outdoor sports. People riding bikes don’t like drivers. People running think bikers believe they own the trails. Walkers who walk side-by-side with 3 or more people, well… need I say more!

This isn’t the point though. To keep some bikers happy, I ran in the opposite direction on the trail. Have you ever done that? I mean, have you ever done something the opposite of how you usually do it?

Now, I realize you cannot do this in all activities. When I ran the other way around, a few things became evident though.

Going a different way opens a new perspective. There are trees you never noticed. Something about the landscape looks new. There are things you notice that you never noticed before.

We get stuck in ruts easily. We need to bust out of them, so we don’t miss a perspective, someone, or something we should notice. We may gain a new appreciation for some and a new perspective for others.

Going a different way means looking out further. When running the opposite way of bikers, you know a bike could be coming around a sharp corner or around a bend. You need to look out further than normal, ensuring you do not run into something.

Looking out further stretches your thinking and your viewpoints. It is unfamiliar territory, so greater vision is required to navigate safely and meaningfully. This is an essential note to make when navigating through our life or business mazes.

Going a different way means you have to understand the old way in order to know where you are with the new way. Many words, simple thought. The past provides mile markers. You know where you are sometimes, because you have been there before. The past delivers some comfort that progress is being made; however, it passes in a moment, and you are back in unfamiliar paths again.

We cannot always rely on the path, but we can rely on our abilities, our community, and our family and friends to help us blaze new trails.

We cannot hang on to the past, yet we can recognize where we have been and ensure we are moving forward in a positive way.

In past posts, I have suggested it is important to do normal things differently from time-to-time. It can be something as simple as driving home a different way. Doing things a little differently will sharpen your perspective and open your mind to creative and innovative thoughts, options, and solutions.

How do you run against the grain to gain new perspectives?