by Anne Malatt, Australia
I used to suffer with road rage. My veneer of ‘niceness’ would crack when I was driving and all my pent-up frustration and rage would come pouring out. There were no words for how I felt and I used to invent expletives. I was still like this when my children were little: they would squeal with delight when they heard a new word like ‘dick-brain’ and repeat it over and over.
My pet hates were people who would pull into the passing lane and drive slowly, so that no-one could pass anyone; people who drove slowly, for any reason; and tailgaters. I love driving, but I liked to drive fast: I was usually running late, and I did not like anyone getting in my way.
I tried as hard as I could to control myself, to have understanding and compassion for why people drove the way they did. I reminded myself that if I wasn’t running late, it would not matter, but still the rage poured forth.
The other day I was driving along and I realised that I was driving within the speed limit: I was not getting annoyed, even though people were still doing what they have always done… and I was really enjoying myself.
What has happened?
I met Serge Benhayon and began to attend Universal Medicine courses and workshops. Serge teaches a way of living that is simple, loving and natural. I had been living far from this way of life, but have been inspired and lovingly supported to return to this way, which now feels true for me.
Firstly, I have learned to try and take responsibility for everything I do and feel, without blaming anyone else, no matter how they are behaving. When I feel frustrated, it is my frustration, and I try to see and feel where it is coming from. When I blamed other people for my problems, I lived in hell. Now, no matter what is going on, I know I am responsible for my life and for everything in my world, and with that responsibility comes the freedom to do something about the things that trouble me, or at least the way I feel about them.
Secondly, I have come to learn that I can only do what I can do, and to only fit into an hour what I can do in an hour, so I am not always running late now. I have come to learn to love myself for who I am, not what I do, so I no longer put so much pressure on myself to do as much as I can all of the time.
Thirdly, I have come to learn to let people in. Not just literally on the road, but into my world, into my heart, as my equals, as fellow human beings. So, when someone pulls out in front of me, I let them in. I realise they are in my world for a reason, even if I don’t understand what that reason is, and even if they have pulled out into the only passing lane between Bangalow and Lismore and I am now going to be late, I let them in and let them be.
It is truly amazing what a difference this has made in my life, to the pace I live and the pace I drive. I love driving now, and use my time in the car as a time to be with myself, to prepare myself for work, to wind down afterwards… and sometimes just to sing and have fun!
Of course, I am still human and old habits die hard. Sometimes I find myself feeling frustrated again. Now, I see this as an opportunity to look more deeply at myself and why I feel this way. Road rage is now a reflection of my way of living, and a way to show me that something is not true in myself and my world. At times when I am in the car with my children, I hear them saying things I used to say. Soon they will be driving, and road rage may be their opportunity for self-reflection, learning and letting people in, too!