Horse Latitudes

I’m not sure if you’re familiar with the concept of the “horse latitudes”. Back in the days of trans-Atlantic sailing they would hit areas called doldrums. These were found around the equator where the prevailing winds tend to go calm. No wind isn’t necessarily a bad thing, unless you are counting on the winds to propel your vessel. Ships would lose their momentum and just begin to drift or just lay still – dead in the water – until the wind came again. With little to no propulsion the sailor would often jettison any extra weight that was being carried in order to get the boats going again. This often meant that non-critical supplies were tossed into the oceans.  Sadly, the equine units aboard often fell into the “non-critical” classification and the horses would be sacrificed in order to save weight, hence the name “horse latitudes”.

Sometimes in my recovery I can hit these areas where there seems to be a lack of wind in my sails. I feel like I am pushing through and making great strides toward my goals and then out of nowhere everything just stops moving and I come to a halt in the middle of the sea. It can be tough to get moving again.

I suppose the biggest danger is in assessing what is critical and non-critical at those times so that I can shed the proper ballast that impedes my progress. The temptation to just start grabbing things and tossing the over the rails can be strong. Water is extremely heavy by volume, but it is also a critical part of the voyage. From a recovery standpoint I might need to relinquish friends and relationships that drag me down. I might need to cut back on the amount of things I do at work. I may need to say “no” where I really want to say “yes” (ahhh, the joy of being co-dependent!).

Whatever it is, I know that when I hit these doldrums in life I need to make some changes. So here’s to Spring Cleaning in July; here’s to recovery;  and here’s to you as well!


-Rise Up!!!

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