I discovered the breakfast taco phenomenon years ago, when driving one of our daughters to school. I would take her to school each morning, and on the way back home would pass a place offering drive-thru breakfast tacos. It was a temptation to which I yielded at least several times each week.
Now a flour tortilla stuffed with refried beans, cheese and salsa is not exactly something you should consume while driving. And, priding myself on being a safe driver whose top priority when behind the wheel is to pay attention, I didn’t attempt to eat those tacos while the car was in motion. Traveling the four-lane major thoroughfare back to my neighborhood required that I pass through about eight traffic lights. I could count on being stopped by at least three or four of those lights, so my plan was always to eat the taco while waiting at the lights.
What I quickly discovered, though, was this. Whenever I had a taco, unwrapped and waiting to eat, I would never encounter a red light. They would be green all the way home. At first I thought it was just a coincidence, but soon I realized it was a pattern. Without a taco, the lights would be mostly red. With a taco, almost always green. Years later, I have found that the same dynamic is at work when I’m wanting to be stopped by a red light so I can look up a web page on my iPhone — I’ll get green lights all the way.
I’m not in a position to know what unseen forces in the universe (or my perception thereof) cause the “breakfast taco phenomenon” to happen, but I am in a position to learn something from it about life in general. And that is, when you desperately need something, you’re not going to get it, but when you let go of the need, you’ll find it in great abundance. When you need the lights to be green so you can quickly get where you’re going, they’ll be red. When you need the lights to be red so you can eat a taco or check your email, they’ll be green.
The breakfast taco phenomenon reminds me of how valuable it can be to let go of my needs, and that’s something that can make a powerful difference in every area of life.