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Personal Essay

Enjoying The Slow Lane

Living in the Washington DC area has taught me many things. My city is full of culture, good food, and some of the greatest architecture the world has ever seen. But dear Lord Almighty, our traffic is the worst. It doesn’t matter what time of day it is, there is always gridlock. Every time I look there is some sort of accident that backs up traffic for miles. Everyone is always on the go. People seem to be in a rush all the time and that mentality seems to follow us everywhere we go.

At work our managers and leaders want more productivity in shorter periods of time. Patience is a trait that often times appears be shelved on a day to day basis. Who likes waiting? Who enjoys the moments between a conceptualized idea and it’s manifestation? I’d venture to say not many. “I don’t care if it’s not done in excellence, I just want it now!” is the mindset that derails so many projects, hopes, and dreams before they can blossom into the wonderful treasures they were conceived to be. Things worth having take time.

When I was growing up one of the things I struggled with the most was my ability to be patient. When I wanted to learn something and I didn’t get it on my first attempt I would become extremely frustrated. “Brandon, you have to learn to be patient”, my father would say. Give yourself a break. I still sometimes deal with that today. A lot of us have amazing ideas and aspirations that we badly want to see manifest in the world. I encourage you today to take a deep breath.

The path of greatness is a slow intentional process. It is a culmination of a series of conscious action steps that result in the success we desire. Success that is birthed after a long passionate grind is appreciated much more than things that appear to happen overnight. The other day on my drive to work, I found myself feeling rushed. I switched lanes frequently in an effort to get around cars I felt were moving slowly. I reached a segment of traffic where there was nothing I could do but wait and move with the flow. At that moment, I laughed to myself. All that bobbin’ and weavin’ and I was still in the same place.

I deliberately let go of the rush mindset and decided to just enjoy the scenery. As I drove along my path, I noticed things I didn’t normally see. When I truly let go of the desire to rush, I found my commute much more enjoyable. I listened to the clever lines of Kendrick Lamar and enjoyed the slow lane. In fact, I actually reached the office on time. It’s funny how that works.

Greatness takes time. Enjoy the slow lane. It’s much better to arrive at the gates of success after a slow methodical process than to quickly throw something together and find yourself in a situation where you presented your gift to the world unfinished, rushed, and not quite what you truly envisioned. Today, as you pursue your goals, dreams, and aspirations think of what you’ve been doing recently. Ask yourself, have I been rushing recently? Have I cut corners to quickly get something done? Am I truly proud of the product my effort has produced? I encourage you to slow down and enjoy the scenery. There is no need to rush. Greatness and success is not something that is created by happenstance. It’s a result of commitment, grit, and relentless passion.

By Brandon Mckay

Brandon (B.W. Mckay) is a black Christian Writer, Author and Entrepreneur from Washington DC. "Living life unapologetically great" is a mantra he lives by daily. He is also the CEO and Founder of Mckay Media Works and World Wide Mckay.