The Road Ahead Is Not Behind You


When I was 13, it seemed like an eternity until I’d be old enough to get a drivers license. Time moved much slower back then (at least to me), and the next three years crawled by as I waited for that magical sixteenth birthday that would finally put me behind the wheel.

Like most of my friends, I took drivers ed. Not because I didn’t know how to drive, (my mom had let me drive a few times in empty parking lots, so I was familiar with the basics), but because I would have to buy my own insurance. And taking a driver’s education class meant a discounted rate.

The course was scheduled on the weekends, and after a month of classroom instruction, it was finally my turn to take the wheel.

I thought I was doing great, keeping my eyes on the road and especially the traffic in the rearview mirror. Then the instructor did something unexpected:  She flipped the rearview mirror up, making it unusable.

Had she lost her mind? How would I know what was going on behind me? Even worse, I lost my confidence. I slowed the car, pulled over, and stopped.

“Why did you do that?” My voice rang with naïve teenage arrogance.

The instructor’s reply was quick and to the point. “I want you to stop looking behind you and concentrate on the road ahead. Your eyes need to be focused on the direction you’re going.”

Thinking back, I now realize there was a lot of insight in what she said.

How many of us are distracted by the past? Yes, it’s natural to remember events from years ago. But good or bad, we can’t change them.

Here’s the real trap: Allowing the past to prevent us from fully participating in the present. Sometimes, the pull from the past is so strong we can feel overwhelmed with doubt and uncertainty, especially when we start thinking about changing the way we eat and getting our bodies back into shape.

Ready to move forward with your life? It’s often necessary to cut the emotional connection with the past. Otherwise, we can become stuck in the fantasy of what might have been, or what we wish we had done better or differently, particularly when we feel the weight of all those excuses that hold us in place and keep us from making the changes we want in our future.

Decide today to own your past—the mistakes, the victories, and the truths. Then get back behind the wheel and create a new future by keeping your eyes—and your focus—on creating positive change.

If your goal is to lose weight, start by eliminating excess sugar and fat from your diet. If you want to get back in shape, dedicate fifteen minutes a day to start an easy exercise routine.  

And remember, you’re not alone. I can help. My website offers articles on healthy diet suggestions, recipes, and workout routines. If you don’t find what you need, send me an email to and I’ll get back to you with some ideas and suggestions.

Keep it healthy,


Jill Reid
Pathway to Personal Growth