Motivational Speaker Asks: Who’s Driving Your Bus?

When I was a little girl, there was an unspoken “rule” in my house that I was supposed to be doing something all the time – unless it was a designated “sit down and watch TV family time.”  Things like cleaning the house, ironing, homework, etc.  If my mother caught me sitting down “goofing off,” there would be a big price for me to pay.  So I LEARNED, keep busy at all times!

Since research tells us that over 97% of all our behaviors are automatic and unthinking and that we are pretty much wired to keep on doing what we have always BEEN doing – how do you think this early learning I received is TRYING to play out in my life?  Oh forget about the fact that I KNOW about this programming, and I KNOW it no longer serves me, and I KNOW I am in charge of my own choices now.

A while back I was taking a break in the middle of the day to watch TV. I was sitting on the sofa, relaxing with a cup of coffee when I heard my husband’s car drive up.  My automatic, STRONG, knee-jerk response was to jump up and start “doing” something immediately!

WHAT???  A grown up, self-confident, got-it-going-on, high producing woman started to demonstrate an old self-destructive behavior without conscious choice?

Yup. That’s what happens.  We’re human and as little people we learned certain behaviors that don’t serve us.  AND – in many cases, we keep on doing them.  So how do we deal with this?

The first step is to KNOW what this automatic behavior is – to own that we automatically do it.  The second step is to OBSERVE, when it happens, the impulse to do it again.  And the third step is to make a different CHOICE.  Over and over again.  See, when we were little someone else was driving our bus.  But WE are driving it now.  WE get to decide where we want to go and whether or not we will enjoy the ride.

So what habit did you learn that doesn’t serve you, that you find yourself unconsciously returning to time and time again?  When you notice you’re doing it, instead of beating yourself up about it, why not step back and say, “Oh wow. Look. I just did that thing again.  That’s interesting.”  Then make a better choice right then.  It’s in THAT moment that you get back in the driver’s seat of your bus.

Okay, gotta run…   Wait.  I take that back. I DON’T have to run.  I think I’ll just sit here and goof off a moment or two.

From your laid back, relaxed bus driver and motivational speaker, Linda Larsen



Motivational Speaker Linda Larsen, CSP has been described by meeting planners and audiences as "hysterically funny," and "riveting." Known for her ability to connect on an authentic and emotional level with audiences, her spontaneous sense of humor, and her engaging and powerful stories, Linda is passionate about sharing ideas to help people live their finest, best, and most productive lives. Her riveting and true story of being kidnapped and held hostage at gunpoint by an escaped convict, and the strategies she used to escape, will give people the tools THEY need to rise above any of life's toughest challenges, to communicate more effectively with THEIR difficult person, and to find creative solutions to THEIR problems. To book motivational speaker, Linda Larsen: 941-927-4700

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  1. Linda, can I just please come and hang out with you? Not only do I learn something every time I read one of your posts, but I just want to come and be around you. I wish all motivational speaker were like you! Fun, informative, inspiring and you don’t take yourself so seriously. I like that!

  2. Umm, you always make me think way back Linda. That’s what makes you such a phenomenal motivational speaker!

  3. Rock on sister! Even more wisdom and wit from one of my favorite motivational speakers on the planet. When I was growing up you were taught to eat everything on your plate, whether you like it or not. Because there were starving children in China who didn’t get to eat overly cooked stuffed peppers (pause for gag). To this day I have a hard time not cleaning my plate. Look at me, you’ll see I’m not lying.

    And I, too, watched my mother do a thousand things at once, all the time. It wasn’t that I was taught that – it was that I saw it and it became ingrained in me – that I’m supposed to do a bunch of things at once. I have broken that habit, and unfortunately sometimes have gone in the other direction. My mother still gasps that we take family naps some days – that I didn’t take my Christmas tree down until February – and that one night I served my husband brownies for dinner. Laugh if you will. But I have chosen, and will continue to choose if I’m lucky, that life is short. And while there is work to be done – there is also rest to be done – and cuddling to be done – and mindless TV watching while munching on chocolate.

    I may not live until I’m a hundred. I may only live another week for all I know. So I’ll try to make it a good one.

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