Expansive Decision Making

What if it could be a YES - AND?

As I approached Winnipeg on my cycling tour, I had a big decision to make. I'm extremely grateful for the mindset tools I've learned, and use in my coaching business, and in my own life. What I haven't previously shared in my posts, is that a week before my departure from Camrose, in what I considered a "routine" visit to the cardiologist, I was advised against this tour. I have a heart condition and I am being treated with medication. Up until now, this has stabilized my heart's functioning. The well-meaning doctor (who said he didn't want to be a downer) brought to mind all the worse case scenarios of this tour... over-exertion, few services, sketchy WiFi and data connections in remote areas, small communities without medication or knowledge of my condition, riding in the heat, dehydration...pretty much the grueling route from Winnipeg around Lake Superior to Sudbury, this time of year. I know this because I am following other cyclist's on Facebook. When I left the Dr's office that day, I told him I was going to make a start, and promised I would listen to my body and "inner wisdom", and I would stop if I was struggling.

Up until now, I have listened. I've cycled shorter distances in the heat, I'm staying hydrated and resting every few days, when I'm tired.

Often when faced with decisions like this, it's easy to fall into the black and white thinking of EITHER/OR... Either I push through and jeopardize my health OR I quit. This is where my thinking initially went... until I heard my mentor's voice ask, "what if it could be a YES-AND.... what would you love? To date, I've loved passing through small communities and making wonderful connections. I've loved talking to media and anyone who wants to know more about my tour and I've loved sharing the vision of my book, and its sale to promote youth mental health; I've loved travelling on quieter highways, and relaxing into the peace and songbirds and the scenery and experience. All of those moments have felt expansive.

When I leaned into YES...AND, I knew I didn't want to quit in Winnipeg. The inspired thought for me was...what if I could bypass the cycle around Lake Superior AND keep going? The solution- on Sunday night I will board the train in Winnipeg with my bike and panniers in tow, and arrive in Sudbury on Tuesday. My tentative plan is to back-track to Espanola, Ontario and head south through the Georgian Bay on highway 6 to Owen Sound. The scenery is supposed to be spectacular and I'm look forward to following the road less traveled.

In Southern, Ontario I will do what I can on bike paths and secondary highways. Once in Ontario, I'm really venturing into the unknown. I've never traveled in this part of Canada before, but I'm learning to trust the process, and so far it has not let me down.

This has been a valuable learning experience for me, and these are my take-aways:

It's OK to change my mind, especially when I do it with kindness and self compassion.

I don't have anything to prove...a rather liberating thought at age 66!

It can be a YES-AND to create an experience I love.

It really is about the journey and not the destination.

Thank you for your continued support and encouragement. I'll meet you down the road.

Blessings, Lynne

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