Paddling to a New Perspective

Last weekend I was in North Carolina with my wife’s family at their lake house. It was a whirlwind adventure and even though it didn’t bring much sleep, I got a lot of ‘recharge’ time. I got to do a lot of things I don’t usually do like canoeing, swimming, tubing, BBQ’ing, eating Whataburger, sleeping in my ENO hammock… stuff like that.
But early on Sunday morning, I decided to go for a short canoe trip. The sun was just coming up and I thought I would paddle around the cove. Once I got out on the water, I changed my destination. I was going to paddle to the bridge my father in law said was exactly one mile away. In a flat bottom canoe. By myself.
Staying somewhat close to the shore, everything seemed to move pretty fast. Well, not fast but I could tell I was making progress. It was tedious to switch sides after every stroke but that’s all I could do to keep going in a straight line.
As I ventured away from the safety of the shore and into the open of the lake, everything changed. I couldn’t tell if I was getting any closer to the bridge and even thought maybe the current was pushing me backwards. I lost my point of reference.
After a few seconds of desperately trying to find a point to lock on to but finding none, I suddenly felt my arms weakening after each stroke. It truly felt as if I was no longer propelling my boat through the water but was attempting to move the entire Earth below me.
What saved me was focusing on these tiny little pulp looking things that were floating on the surface of the water. There weren’t many but when I saw them and ‘sped’ past them, it gave me much relief to know I was actually progressing.
Yeah it’s kinda silly to freak out about that but it was crazy at how different I felt when I just shifted my perspective.
If you are going through a difficult time at the moment, just try to look at it from another angle. You may be surprised at what you find and you may even find it not as bad as you thought.