One of the first things I noticed after arriving in Costa Rica was the interesting relationship Tico drivers have with yield signs. There weredozens of them on my initial ride into San Jose, far more than I probably encounter at home in any given week. Here, there seem to be quite a few creative interpretations of what the signs mean, and I enjoyed observing this as part of my initial landing here.
Finally, on my third day here, after time on the phone with a particularly slow and cranky bus line agent, I felt the need to just take a pause. In a short moment of meditation, I got the message to explore if there was an intermediate place to travel to, allowing me to break up my travel time, see a new place and avoid the inordinate expense that seemed inevitable if I pushed through with the plan I came here with.
With just a little research, I confirmed that indeed there was a great option, one that would let me travel by boat and spend a night in the little beach town of Montezuma. When I sat with this possibility, I noticed that my body felt at ease. I was able to let go of all the physical tension that had accumulated as a result of this search.
In that moment, I felt like I had just yielded to life. Instead of trying to push through, like a crazed Texan in a giant truck, I slowed down, let go of my plans, and saw another way.
This experience reminded me of something I’ve already known, but can easily forget: Anytime we encounter continual obstacles to a plan, it’s generally worthwhile to consider other options. Doing so requires mindfulness to consciously slow down and realize we are attached to a plan, and openness to consider that there might be some alternative way of achieving the outcome we desire.
In the end, I got to where I needed to go, and I did so in a far more scenic and adventurous way than I even initially knew was possible. When you yield to life, you also may get a much more fulfilling and robust experience than you had even imagined possible.
So, the next time you feel like you’re pushing through a bit too hard, just remember to yield a bit to life and not be this guy: