Lessons from Jury Duty

The Big PictureAuntJodi

Over and over I chant that a healthy lifestyle is about so much more than just diet and exercise. It is so much more than just maintaining a healthy weight or logging in time with a heartrate above 150. A healthy lifestyle includes healthy habits in every area of your life: mentally, emotionally, physically, and spiritually.

Sometimes life is insane and there is no time to go to the gym…maybe that is your reality. Sometimes physical ailments or conditions limit your diet or your ability to lose weight. Sometimes your circumstances make stress inevitable and emotionally you are wrung out.

This is life and we all understand!

But this is why a healthy lifestyle is so important.

When you zoom out and take in the big picture of your life, you need to know what you are standing on when everything else is crumbles. What is your foundation? For me, my personal relationship with Christ is first and my healthy lifestyle that is a scaffolding of healthy coping skills, solid and trustworthy relationships, and physical endurance and stamina are the second line of defense.  It takes time and effort to build a solid defense! Zoom out on your life for a moment…how’s your line of defense looking? Are there areas that need support and attention?  Today is the day to begin!

What I learned from Jury Duty

I usually wait until I get inspired to write a blog. Inspiration was not coming and I was tired and struggling to feel qualified to discuss healthy living! But then yesterday inspiration came in a form I did not expect…jury duty.

For me, situations that are unfamiliar are uncomfortable and stressful. So, I attempted to help myself in every way that I could to relax: prayer, packed snacks, detailed driving instructions and plenty of time, and a good night’s sleep. So off I went. Bumper to bumper traffic for 60 minutes is not a fun way to begin a day…just saying. *perspective* I arrived at 9 am, checked in as a prospective juror and began what I thought would be a day filled with reading and waiting to be released. After viewing 40 minutes of required videos about our legal system and all the moving pieces, *perspective* I settled in…only to be called in the very first group to the staging area. 60 of us were herded like cattle through many winding hallways and elevators leading to more hallways. Instructions were rapid and hard to hear with “don’t” being a repetitive theme. Then we waited. Standing in single file, numerical order lines, we waited. I was #30. People of all different ages, races, socioeconomic levels, and physical ability waiting obediently to find out if we would be assigned to the jury for a trial we now knew would be 6-7 days! *perspective* To make a long story short, hours and hours went by in a small court room listening to people’s lives and situations as the jury selection process unfolded. All the while watching the defendant, and the group of lawyers examine each one of us and take notes if we spoke. *perspective* I finally was dismissed at 5:15pm, understanding that a large group of jurors were required to return the next day to complete the process. *perspective* Upon exiting the shuttle that took me back to the parking garage and finding my car, I began the trek home…you guessed it, bumper to bumper traffic for 60 minutes (in my car that is a clutch no less). Arriving at 6:30 pm the couch and quiet were welcome friends!

So, what inspiration came from all of that?  Perspective is important and needs to continually be challenged. We tend to get so involved in our own lives that we neglect to consider that other people have very different lives. But how is this related to healthy living? Well, attitude is a big player in how we deal with stress and how we respond to our circumstances. Pity parties and victim mentalities are destructive and paralyzing. Perspective is one way to ensure your attitude is appropriate, helpful, and healthy. As I stood and waiting for hours yesterday, my head pounded and my mind struggled with the idea of the potential time commitment this trial would require if I was selected. The inspiration came as I evaluated my own life with new perspective. As I type, there are people in the court room again today and there will be tomorrow too. Each life impacted by what is required to keep our justice system as fair as possible. Each judge, lawyer, clerk, security guard, and janitor working to promote the process that protects the freedoms we are blessed to enjoy. Zoom out a bit today my friends and take in the bigger picture around you. Find things to be thankful for and embrace the challenges you face with new energy and understanding. Find small things that bring you joy and hug the people you love. Challenge your perspective today…we are blessed!

“You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you.” Isaiah 26:3

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One Response

  1. Always insightful and spot on… thanks for the reminder!

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