If you’re learning to ride a motorcycle, be prepared to have your life changed. People who have only ever driven a car cannot understand fully that riding is certain to alter your life perspective just a little. Here are three ways how.

Riding a Motorcycle Develops Presence of Mind

Riding a motorcycle is vastly different from riding in a car. A rider is radically vulnerable to the elements and to the surrounding traffic. People in cars are far removed from these things and naturally, their attention is far less focused. On a bike, you are not afforded such luxury (or idiocy). You must develop focus and vigilance to survive. It is a form of active meditation, of being with the present moment as it unfolds. Drifting attention or distraction can spell serious bodily injury for a rider. And developing the focus to stay alert and attuned to what is happening right now in the present is a life skill that surely does not disappear the moment you step away from the bike.

“Energy Flows Where Attention Goes”

Well, you don’t have to sound that new-agey, but the core principle rings true. Wherever your focus is directed on a bike is the direction you are (or will soon be) headed. And perhaps beyond inertia and the laws of physics, this principle likely applies to our lives as well. At least that’s what the wise seem to tell us. Lean in this direction, and there you go. Stare in that direction, and you will veer right for it. The things we repeatedly focus our attention on inevitably form the grooves of pattern in our lives. If continued, those patterns become habit. And habits (or lack thereof) are what make up our everyday experience and ultimately the very trajectory of our lives. What is worthy of your attention?

You Will Understand that Security is an Illusion

And lastly, anyone who rides must intuitively grasp that avoiding all possible risks for the mere feeling of security, is overrated. The truth is, no one is ever completely secure. There are no guarantees in life, except that life is not forever. Try as we may shield ourselves from the inevitable truth of our vulnerability, it has always been there, and will always be there. Those who ride understand on some level the illusion of absolute security. Life is meant, ultimately, to be lived. And a life well-lived does not take shelter from the world. It embraces the world, in full force.