Muscle Memory

You have heard the saying…

…you never forget how to ride a bike. Calvin and Hobbes - Riding a Bike

There is something about learning it when you are young and you never forget how to do it when you are older. Of course, you may have issues with your ability to accomplish task – legs and muscles may not work as easily as they once did; your sense of balance may be gone; your eyesight limits your speed… But learning once makes it easier to know later.

This is true with a lot of what we once learned to do. Once you get it down, it’s easy to repeat over and over with similar results. It is said that sports figures understand this, and even though they often retrain for different results, they know when their patterns are messed up because they get poor results.

I was thinking about this and how we respond to our pressures. We learn a pattern of response at some younger age, and we keep repeating the same patterns over and again. Later in life we may learn there are better ways to respond and it’s tough to “un-learn” a lifetime of habit and relearn new techniques.

Whether they be what we say, how we react, or how we treat ourselves to rewards – we all have muscle memory. Long learned and hard to re-tool.

We also know you “…can’t teach an ol’ dog new tricks…”. But that’s not true. I know plenty of older folks who are learning all the new ways of handling technology challenges. It may take longer and more teaching moments, but you can learn new things!

But here’s a thought for you… You may need to change your ways, but just as equally your old paths may be beneficial.

Thus says the LORD: “Stand in the ways and see, And ask for the old paths, where the good way is, And walk in it; Then you will find rest for your souls. But they said, ‘We will not walk in it.’  (Jeremiah 6:16 NKJV)

Walk that path of youth. Over and over into adulthood. Never forget it. If you stray you may easily find yourself tracking back down those familiar places of your youth.

Train up a child in the way he should go, And when he is old he will not depart from it. (Proverbs 22:6 NKJV)

What we learned in our youth can go work for us later in life. What we should have learned can be easily learned later when we need it.