Take a second and close your eyes (don’t really close your eyes or you won’t be able to read the rest silly). But seriously, think of a situation in your life where you are running and running or pushing and pushing in order to get forward. You know you’re moving, but nothing around you has changed; you are literally in the same place. Have you identified an area or situation in your life like this? If you have, congratulations! You have just identified your Hamster Wheel.
Hamster Wheel? Yes, think about it. In many cases, a hamster gets up every day and hops on his hamster wheel and runs on it all day for seemingly no reward. In the beginning, the hamster may be getting stronger and may feel like its accomplishing something but in reality no matter how much effort he puts into this task, no matter how fast the hamster runs when he gets off the wheel he is still in the same place.
Now your hamster wheel may be a job that you work your hardest at, and after hours upon hours of work and effort, you still feel like you’re in the same place. No reward, no growth, just the same task, the same paycheck week after week. Maybe your hamster wheel is a relationship where you go to the same places, and you do the same things (or nothing), you even have the same fights time after time again. You try to suggest new things, you attempt to go to new places but its always the same thing. Maybe you have more than one hamster wheel or there is a combination of things that create your wheel, either way, once you identify your hamster wheel, the next step is to get off!
For some, getting off the wheel may be as easy as making changes to your relationship or ending it. For others, it may be a bit more complicated like finding and securing a new job; but you have to start somewhere. I, unfortunately, have not successfully eliminated the hamster wheels in my life, but I have identified them, and I am in the process of making the necessary changes. One word of advice to those of you who will also be beginning your journey; while you may still have to get on the wheel a few more times remind yourself that this is a temporary thing and you are actively working to move on from it. Your body may have to still be in one place, but your mind can be wherever you want it to be. Keep your focus on where you want to be, continue to pray and ask God to provide you with the tools you need to remove this wheel, and before you know it you’ll look up and not only will you be off of the wheel but you’ll be out of the cage completely!