own laneSome of the best advice I’ve heard? “Stay in your own lane.” I don’t remember where I first heard this sage insight, but it sure has carried me through some rough patches. And not just while driving.

Recently I drove to Nebraska for a family visit/business trip, and I encountered plenty of drivers drifting and downshifting over into my lane. Mercy! I respect the truckers (and I saw probably a thousand of them!) and how they have to manhandle their high-profile rigs, particularly in the high winds and blowing snow. Then there are the go 90+ mph folks that weave in and out of the lanes and act like they own every inch of the road. Stay in your own lane.

I-Come-First Attitude

Stay in your own lane actually applies to most every area of life. Think about it. The phrase is another way to say know your boundaries, understand your responsibilities and bypass meddling in other people’s business. We find this drive-as-I-want, I-come-first, I’ll-get-what-I-want attitude in countless scenarios in our culture and world today.

Putin wants to flex his power and control more land and people? Invade and decimate Ukraine.

China (and perhaps other countries??) want to check out America’s military operations on the ground? Send spy balloons to gather intelligence from the skies.

The boss plans to impress the CEO and orders his team to work crazy hours so the quarterly report will be exceptional and he’ll garner the kudos. Stay in your own lane.

Neighbors snarl and gossip about the new family on the block who speak little English and just seem a bit unkempt. Stay in your own lane.

What is there about pointing out others’ weaknesses and quirks that makes us feel “better than”? Why do we drift over into other people’s business and act like we have our own spy balloons on watch? Stay in your own lane.

Maintain Your Lane

Perhaps one of our greatest strengths in learning to bend and come back from challenges and adversity is our ability to simplify our days, narrow our focus on priorities and stay in our own lane.

I know for me that I am much better at regaining my equilibrium and moving forward when I stop weaving in and out of other people’s messes and deal with my own. Now, that doesn’t mean you or I can’t step into another person’s struggle and lend a hand, an ear, or sound advice. But all of us need to be sure we don’t bulldoze our way into in another person’s lane and then plan to establish squatter’s rights.

I just read this quote about lanes online and it brings a smile. “Everyone has their own lane, maintain yours . . . there’s less traffic and no speed limit.” Love it! Who needs the crowded, high-speed antics to congest your life?

Stay in and maintain your own lane is a wise perspective for our drive-as-I-want, I-come-first, I’ll-get-what-I-want world. And the bonus best advice? Taking care of your lane works for driving, relationships, work, neighborhoods and international airspace.