Use It or Lose It

The human brain is an amazing thing.  It can keep your heart beating, your lungs expanding, your body moving, and allow you to store vast amounts of information.

It’s been said that most people only use about 10 percent of their brain capacity.  Some people must use even less.

How else do you explain talking on one cell phone while texting on another while driving a tow truck over the speed limit with an eight-year-old relative in the passenger seat?  It was only a matter of time before there was an accident.  Unfortunately for the driver of the car that was rear-ended and the owner of the pool where the tow truck landed, it was a decision with disastrous consequences.  See http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/32584570/ns/technology_and_science-tech_and_gadgets/ for the full story.

I would think someone who visited wrecks on a regular basis would have more respect for the task of driving than this young man.  Apparently the desire to stay connected, whether it was with work or a friend, was stronger than the desire to be safe.  Perhaps he is like many young people who think they are immune to the dangers of multi-tasking on the road. 

So often we just don’t think.  We do what feels right in the moment, go down the path of least resistance, letting life carry us along.

When I was younger our family vacationed by the ocean in North Carolina.  One of my favorite activities was going out past the breaking waves and lying on an inflatable mat, letting the gentle waves rock my body to a near sleep state. 

The problem was, the waves would slowly push that little mat not only farther from shore, but farther down the shoreline.  Had I actually fallen asleep, I would have literally been in deep water.

Sometimes I live my life like that, not taking the time to think critically and make wise decisions but letting life just push me along.  When I finally “wake up” I’ve drifted away from where I really wanted to be.  I have to purposefully slog back to a better path. 

To quote an old anti-drug commercial, the brain is a terrible thing to waste. 

Oh, and don’t text and drive. 

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