Near Death

So I am driving home yesterday to have a brainstorming session with my dad…and I hear rattling. It’s not uncommon for my car to rattle…I mean…it was made in 88. About 5 seconds later…the car isn’t rattling…the car is swerving. Problem: I am in the fast lane. Problem #2: It’s the height of traffic. Problem #3: front right tire is gone. Quick assessment of the situation: I am driving 70, a destroyed front right tire, I need to get over ASAP. By some stroke of luck, I got over two lanes, waved my arms outside my window so another lady could let me over…and miraculously ended up on the side, and then into a turnout. I sat there…and expected my heartbeat to be pounding. Instead. Boom boom……….boom boom……boom boom…..I was cool as ice. Literally 2 minutes later a free CHP service truck drives up…we replace my tire…I am on the road in 5 minutes.

What in the world could I possibly learn from this? Or…why in the world was I not freaking out? I don’t really have an answer…as much as a gut feeling. Hours, and hours, and hours of mental preparation for “when the shit hits the fan” kept my mind focused on what needed to be done vs. the current situation. If I panicked, my car would have been completely out of control at a high speed and there is a possibility I would not be writing to you today. There are endless possibilities of bad circumstances that could have happened…but since I took care of what needed to be done… I made it safely to the other side.

When the shit hits the fan…don’t panic. Accept the current circumstance…assess your options…and act. Action will take you places. Thinking won’t.



Evan Sanders

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  • Jeff Emmerson
    April 20, 2012 at 11:49 am

    Amen to that! I’m glad everything worked out so well, man!

  • Jeff Emmerson
    April 20, 2012 at 11:50 am

    If you ever want help on becoming a successful author, let me know!

  • Sunny Sodday
    April 20, 2012 at 11:54 am

    I’ve been following your blog for quite a some time. It is an awesome journey so far. You drive a car model of 88? I was born in 87. Why? Wish you do a post on that.

  • jofac
    April 20, 2012 at 12:13 pm

    Good to know that everything is ok, thanks God and the you managed the situation!!

    • jofac
      April 20, 2012 at 12:14 pm

      ….and the way you managed the situation!!

  • AlongTheTao
    April 20, 2012 at 12:48 pm

    Bad situation, but great post and I love the last two lines. I think the message is that you have the power to take on any challenge if you, as you said, don’t over think it and if you go with what is happening. If you had fought the situation by over thinking with thoughts like “oh crap, this can’t be happening”, you would have panicked and overcorrected or something. Instead you just let it happen and took control of your reaction.

  • Pink Ninjabi
    April 20, 2012 at 12:52 pm

    Wow, that’s incredible as it reminds me of the swerves of life that blindside us, just like the miracle that you are alive to share your gifts with us through your blog. Thank you for reminding us to grip onto the steering wheel, look to where we want to go, and deal with flat tires as they come. Life is unexpected, and all we can do is to be calm, and drive forward.

    With much gratitude,


  • Paws To Talk
    April 20, 2012 at 1:02 pm

    Wow! Glad to hear you are okay. You’re coolness under pressure is impressive.

    Bella and DiDi

  • thebettermanprojects
    April 20, 2012 at 2:14 pm

    No need to beg. The thought process is entirely part of the situation, however, during circumstances that relate to life or death…and that need to be solved immediately, a split second assessment of the situation is necessary. Rather than over thinking…panicking…being frozen by fear…not committing to a plan…etc…I acted. Action is all the matters. If you battle plan it forever, and don’t back up your words (this can be relatable to many different situations..pretty much most)…all your battle planning becomes worthless.

    Most of the time when you go to war, you have a plan. However, when you get there…people don’t act how they should, they aren’t where they should be, the enemy isn’t where they should be, the weather isn’t how it should be, and you have to act on the go. If I failed to act in the car, it would have flipped, I would have been in bad shape considering the oncoming traffic, and the outcome wouldn’t have been good. However, with the immediate decision to act which encompass a fair amount of our decisions in life, I got myself to safety.

    I never said the thought process wasn’t relevant. Thinking is always relevant…the duration of the thinking however…is what is in question.

    Life has many different swerves…people come and people go don’t they.

    • Russell McC
      April 22, 2012 at 9:47 am

      I think I can see where the responder was coming from, as it made me a bit curious too.

      “When the shit hits the fan…don’t panic. Accept the current circumstance…assess your options…and act. Action will take you places. Thinking won’t.”

      More than anything, I think it was just your choice of words that made it a tad confusing at the end there. For me anyway.

      I took it more as when there is a an event such as the one you were involved in, you don’t have time to create a new plan, you must rely on the knowledge you have readily at hand to make a split second decision. Which given how most people view “thinking” as a process involving a good amount out time, could be considered a moment where you are not thinking.

      Anyway, I loved the post. Glad you’re okay. Hope to continue reading many more of your enlightening posts.

  • Kate
    April 20, 2012 at 3:56 pm

    Good post about staying calm while in crisis-mode. Glad you and the car survived. My dad is an ace at remaining calm.

  • Candy S
    April 20, 2012 at 5:56 pm

    And make sure that your guardian angel is on assignment and alert! 🙂

  • toliveinspired
    April 20, 2012 at 8:49 pm

    Oh my gosh that must have been scary! Sounds like you handeled it well.. glad you are safe and ok now!

  • 3D Eye
    April 21, 2012 at 12:13 am

    An interesting post, and an excellent example of instinctual intelligence. I share your interest in this subject, and coincidentally wrote about it a couple of days ago – Our Minds, Our Instincts, Our Reactions: . The key to this is, as you say, ‘hours of mental preparation for “when the shit hits the fan”‘ but also living life (especially when driving at high speeds!) as much as possible ‘in the zone’ – in a state of ‘flow’, which is a state of relaxed concentration – focused on the present moment, ready to deal with whatever might happen and whatever life has to offer, especially if some shit hits the fan.

  • thewardanceofthemindandsoul
    April 21, 2012 at 1:40 am

    Trust fills us with confidence doesn’t it! So glad you’re okay.
    I really liked the end statement…’Action will take you places. Thinking won’t.’. It says it all really, if only we could remember to do it most of the time eh!

  • Jim Cantwell
    April 21, 2012 at 8:07 am

    I am glad you avoided catastrophe, a tire blow out is always a concern when I am on my bike in the land of pot holes.

  • evea192
    April 22, 2012 at 12:24 am

    One good lesson to be learnt here, and thanks for sharing it with us.

  • omwaombara
    April 22, 2012 at 12:40 am

    Sound goods. Plus there were good people out there to help you too!

  • njrunnergirl
    April 22, 2012 at 10:47 am

    I am so so glad that you kept your cool and are alright. I learned a similar lesson a few months ago when my friends and I were driving in the snow and lost control of the car. We ended up crashing into a tree, but instead of trying to regain control of the car which would probably have tipped us over, we were cool and collected, and no one was seriously hurt. It does teach you how fragile life is, and how little control we have over somethings- which puts into perspective how wonderful the little things are.

  • rebeccaoftomorrow
    April 22, 2012 at 5:18 pm

    Fascinating – “don’t think, act!”