We’ve all had days where we just feel like we’re the walking dead. Going through the motions just trying to survive the day or week. I recently encountered a few of the walking dead but they were speeding like crazed monkeys rising from the grave proving to me that being checked out is not only a recipe for a life left to the whims of others, but also downright dangerous to others.
When I walk over to my yoga class I cross a small road (within my company’s campus I might add) and then go into a parking garage which leads me up a ramp and to the gated doorway. As soon as I enter the parking garage I always cross over so I can walk facing traffic. I know that people gone free from the prison of the corporate cube for a lunch hour can be in a wild hurry. Now I understand hurry. I also understand being so pissed off in your day job that you get behind the wheel at lunch or the end of the day just wanting to put as much distance between you and the office as fast as humanly possible. Yet, what I experienced still took me by surprise.
As I hurredly crossed over to the opposite side of traffic in the garage, I instantly heard the revving engine and squealing tires of a large SUV barrelling down the incline and headed out the exit. For a moment I had to wonder if I was in one of those thriller movies and I was the target. But then I realized it was no such thing. The guy in the SUV nearly whacked me with their side mirror (they got THAT close) and while they could clearly see me (if they were looking out their icy stare) they just blew past without even acknowledging that there was a pedestrian there (me) or other cars exiting the garage.
Now this would’ve been bad enough except about 2 minutes later, yet another car, this time a small sedan with a middle aged woman in it did the same exact thing. I was just clearly pleased I made it up and through the doors and onto my yoga class unscathed.
What makes people so oblivious that they literally run others over in their rush to get somewhere (or away from somewhere)? I’ve written about being on autopilot before, and it is definitely a recipe for missing out on actually living your life. It seems that autopilot mixed with a little rage and rush is an even worse recipe for disaster. Unfortunately, this condition seems to be on the rise.
Are You on in a Zombie State and on Autopilot?
Here’s a few quick questions to determine the answer to this question:
- Name three things you remember about your morning/evening commute.
- What was the last person you came in contact with wearing?
- If you live with a partner or have kids, do you remember saying good-bye to them this morning?
- What did you eat at your last meal?
These may seem like silly questions, but if you have to stop and think for long, or don’t know the answer at all (especially to having a clue about the last trip you took in your car), it is a sign that you may be operating on autopilot and putting not only yourself but others in danger. I don’t mean to sound alarmist, after all millions of people do it everyday. And, in all reality an occasional autopilot day isn’t the end of the world (assuming you’re not actually piloting a plane or say, working in the ER), but a string of them can be a signal to wake up to the messages your body and life are telling you — some sort of change/adjustment is in order.
So, the next time you find yourself feeling like a zombie, take a moment to stop – look – and listen. Chances are there is a message waiting there for you.