Saturday, September 6, 2014

Overcorrecting

I shared the following on a previous blog. I am re-posting it here as this concept has been on my mind a lot lately. And, it serves as a good reminder to me that when something bad happens, it is probably best not to make too many decisions too quickly. If made too quickly, one may regret it her entire life:

A couple of years ago, somewhat on the spur of the moment, I decided to take a quick trip to southern California to see my brother and his family. It was January, and we had just had a major snow storm in Utah. We were inundated with snow, and lots of it. I needed a break, so sunny Cali seemed the right place to go.

I took a half day off from work so that I could get a jump start on the trip- after all, I had but a couple of days off work and I meant to make the most of my time off. By the time I left the Salt Lake area, it was afternoon and by the time I reached St. George, it was night and very dark. As I traveled south from Salt Lake to St. George, the weather had improved dramatically. And, so had my spirits. It was nice to see green grass again and not just white everywhere. I could also feel the warmer weather and it felt wonderful.

Continuing to drive south out of St. George, I found myself needing to change lanes. I looked over my right shoulder to make sure there were no cars behind me in the other lane. As I looked over my shoulder, I could see the moon out the rear window. It was breathtaking- clear and full, bright and big. I was mesmerized and could not take my eyes off of it. When I looked forward again, I could sense, and feel, that the road had changed, I was going around a steep curve, and I was headed off the freeway. 

My first instinct was to over-correct. At that thought, instantaneously in my mind's eye, I saw what would happen to me if I did: I saw myself losing control of my car, I saw the car flipping and rolling over several times, and I saw myself badly hurt, if not dead. In that instance, I knew I should not over-correct.

I held onto the steering wheel tightly, maintained control of the car, and took the curve as strongly as I could, riding it out. Slowly the road straightened and everything was OK. My heartbeat returned to its normal function after a few minutes. I knew I had had a very close call.

Maybe the trick, in life, is to ride out the curves and not try to over-correct. Sometimes, the over- correcting can be more damaging than the initial bend in the road.