ALL Speeds Ahead – Lessons on Change from the Ocean

IMG_6083The last time I was on the East Coast I reflected on Waves, their Power and Lessons on Change. So this time as I stood at the ocean edge with the freezing waves at my toes and sea glass in my hand it was hard not to reflect. Was I remembering to focus on the beauty formed over time with the sea glass or longing for the big photo worthy waves?

I kept thinking about the sea glass and wondering about change.

It didn’t hit till we were touring old war ships in the Halifax harbour. As we climbed the stairs and started our tour of the ship we came to the bridge and the Engine Order telegraph (ok, I had to get some help with that one). To be honest it was the old print and shiny casing that caught my eye. Through the lens I noticed the various speeds, imagining the boat barreling through open waters at full speed. It’s the ideal picture we often create of change, full speed IMG_2203ahead, no looking back.

I would have seen full speed ahead as the ideal for but over the two weeks my dad had roped us in to binge watching The Last Ship. Not necessarily quality viewing but definitely addictive and informative (for this post). Depending on the conditions, the purpose, and crazy hurdles that kept popping up in the show, different speeds served a different purpose. Sometimes it was necessary to just stop and be still in the pursuit of moving forward, using a slow speed to navigate the reefs, and other times it was full speed ahead. Even through the dramatics of the show, I wondered if the same could be true of change. Was I making the best of the various speeds of change or rushing to push the dial to full speed? Maybe sometimes we need to go half speed ahead so we can hone the skills a little more. Maybe we need to slow down to see what path is best next to get us to our final destination and sometimes we come to those calm open waters and it is full speed ahead.

It seems like every time I’m at the ocean’s edge I’m reminded that change is often not a quick endeavour. It’s a long journey with twists and turns, requiring a great navigator that isn’t focused solely on speed.

I may slip a piece of sea glass in my pocket this year so I have that small reminder to remember time. Here is hoping for a year at ALL speeds ahead.

Love to hear your thoughts!


4 thoughts on “ALL Speeds Ahead – Lessons on Change from the Ocean

  1. This is such a great reminder – and not only about us! Sometimes we can get frustrated with the speed of change in others and it’s important to remember that speed can fluctuate according to person as well.

  2. Love that the environment led to this reflection. Although not an oceanologist by design, (I’m a limnologist – the study of freshwater) I can relate wholeheartedly. Be it in my work with students or with faculty groups I often say that “While life can exist in a stagnant pool of water it s oh – so much more diverse when the waters flow!”
    And when considering change & speed, remember that what may seem an eternity to us is a blink of an eye for an ocean – yet the impact of specific change & speed on our end may seem an eternity for the ocean as well.
    In the end, whether discussing an ocean, a school board or a classroom we all work best when working towards our niches at our optimum speed rather than an ultimate speed.
    Great post & reflection!

    • Oh, I love that for us it may seem like an eternity but to the ocean it is a blink of an eye. So many lessons from stopping and listening.
      Thanks so much for reading Rob!

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