Who are you, really? What defines you? Mom/Dad, Wife/Husband, Daughter/Son? But more than that. Go deeper.
I remember learning from a Dale Carnegie course to “live each day in day-tight compartments”. That’s good for some things to avoid undue worry and stress, but balance is key here. We discover so much about who we are as we live and grow, and when we come out of our comfort zone to experience new things. If we spend all of our time living for today, we never reach for the stars of tomorrow.
I grew up learning that I am an empathetic person. I’m an introvert. I honestly like to be more of a follower – more of a helper, than a leader. A prime example here is that I love my role as 2nd flutist in my orchestra. I enjoy the nuances of following the lead of the 1st flute. I don’t want to be the soloist. I prefer the challenge of listening to her and finding the perfect way to blend and match.
I spent most of my life following that Dale Carnegie motto. And I was stuck. Don’t get me wrong, I was happy and felt fulfilled. But I didn’t know what else was there, how much more there could be – how much more I could be.
My world opened about 5 1/2 years ago. I made a change in my nutrition and that led to discovering facets of myself that I never knew existed. I began to challenge my beliefs about myself. I stepped out of my comfort zone and I began to grow. I was the kid who always stood by and watched the action (I was literally always the last kid picked for teams in gym class), and suddenly I was participating in my life and having a blast.
I’ve learned that although I still don’t enjoy competition with other people, I love competing against myself. I’ve learned that stepping out of my comfortable box (and moving off my couch) is satisfying and gratifying and completely uplifting. In the past 5 years, I’ve gone from a total couch potato to discovering that I am an athlete. I CAN do things. I’ve changed my mindset and my body (figuratively and literally). Instead of “I can’t”, my mantra is “I get to”… participate in my life, spend more time with my family, run a marathon, challenge myself to do more and be more, and to help others find out what they are capable of doing…
The last 19 months have thrown a lot of us off our game. I include myself here. With all of my triathlon and running races canceled in 2020, then some running injuries, I forgot that newfound feeling of awesome accomplishment. Now I AM BACK. I’ve spent the past month “doing the right training right” (my triathlon training group “TriDot” mantra). Not only have I started gaining back some of my speed and strength, but most importantly, I’m getting that feeling back – I’m reaching for the stars again. Tomorrow I’m volunteering on the course of the Boston Marathon. My latest thoughts are not “how can I run faster”, but “when I will be running Boston?”.
If this resonates with you, and you’ve been plodding along inside your box, reach out to me. I’d love to help you reach for your stars and discover what you’ve been missing.