Day 24: Smart Keys

My Prius has something called a “smart key.”  I don’t have to unlock the door with this key, or stick it in the ignition.  I just have to have it on me–in my pocket or my bag–and the car senses it and opens the door when I touch the handle, and starts when I push the power button on the dash.

This “smart key” is one of my favorite things about the Prius (the gas mileage isn’t bad either.)

But lately I’ve been getting the sense that there may be more than one smart key in my bag.  I’m beginning to sense that I have a bunch of  “smart keys” embedded  inside me at the heart or soul level that automatically open and connect me to certain people, places, and even certain activities.

For example, have you ever met a person and just instantly hit it off?  The only explanation is that your internal “smart key” responded to something inside them and made a connection, ignited a spark.

Or did you ever go someplace–a town on vacation, or a new city, or even a restaurant or a bar, and feel instantly at home and comfortable? Like you’d been there before? That somehow you knew instinctively where the bathroom was, or how to get around on the bus system?

And conversely, did you ever meet someone and despite having a million things in common, were never able to connect, ignite, or start a meaningful relationship?

Or have you ever gone someplace that was obviously wonderful and fabulous, someplace all your friends recommended and loved, and felt nothing but boredom and discontent?

Did you ever want, with all your heart, to love a person or a place, and despite all kinds of persistence and manipulation and self-deception have to finally admit that your smart key just wasn’t connecting with their, or its electronics, and resign yourself to the fact that you would never get in, would always be shut out?

Have you ever tried a new sport or activity: running, ballroom dancing, rock climbing, golf, yoga, etc. and felt something unlock and ignite within you, at the body or soul level, and know, without question, that you could DO this, even if at first you were incredibly awkward and clumsy?

I think it’s incredibly important to begin to notice what your “smart keys” are unlocking.  And what they’re not.

I think  we waste our lives when we try to break into a job, or have a relationship, or live in a place, or engage in an activity that’s never going to happen for us, even though we may want it to, or think we should.

But if we have this understanding that inside of us we have many “smart keys,” isn’t it our job, and shouldn’t we take as our life mission to find all the doors that these keys inside of us unlock?

One of the things I say at the end of every yoga class is this: “Notice how you feel.”  Maybe I should ask instead, “Did anything unlock for you today?  Did anything open?

4 thoughts on “Day 24: Smart Keys

  1. Love the perspective, I absolutely know what you mean. Today I did the usual routine but with a lot of spinal twists because they just felt so good today. So yeah, I unlocked. I’m going to start paying attention to where my keys are now.


  2. Kathleen:

    What a fabulous post: insightful, poignant as usual.

    Reminds me of what Joseph Campbell said once, “Follow your bliss.”

    It’s easy to follow the herds–what everybody else is doing–and get lost in the mad scramble of conformity.

    Unfortunately, cheerless conformity won’t bring us the inner joy we are looking for on life’s journey, as Robin Williams reminds us, time and again, in the wonderful movie, “Dead Poet’s Society.”

    Each one of us has to discover what floats his/her boat. It is equally true that what floats your boat may sink my boat.

    My interests and hobbies reflect my personality, and your interests and hobbies reflect your personality.

    Just like no two snowflakes are exactly the same, no two individuals are exactly alike.

    Thanks for the reminder. And yes, when I discovered your blog, I knew instinctively it was the one for me. Cheers!


  3. LOVE LOVE LOVE this!!!!

    Wow Kath, I’m rrreeeallly going to think in these terms now. I often think about what and who I feel connected to or not, but have never thought in the terms of “smart keys” … ooooo, the analogy itself UNLOCKS & OPENS up so much!

    PS Day 24 brought 30 min. of yoga, again at bedtime, still a bit slow (side note: I received a snail sticker on Friday!!! how appropriate!!!) but I noticed a bit more intensity and a definite ability to hold boat for longer, stronger. In addition to basic boat, I’ve been holding boat with my long, strong yoga scarf and also pulling inward in a butterfly-type pose, but still up off the ground, holding feet with the scarf. Nice work-out for arms too. My breathing is also mmmmuch longer, stronger. Progress … progress … the journey … the journey …


  4. “I think we waste our lives when we try to break into a job, or have a relationship, or live in a place, or engage in an activity that’s never going to happen for us, even though we may want it to, or think we should.”

    You have no idea how much I needed to hear this! Thanks for always being inspiring


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