Finisher’s Medal

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When I left the corporate world over three years ago, I did so in direct contrast to everything that had led me to that point previously. College begat grad school which begat interviews with governmental agencies which begat…52 Marathons in one year? Where in the heck did that come from? Wait, you are now moving to Utah and taking a huge pay cut to take a job in the running world? And now that job was rubbish so you are going to work for yourself? Yep.

This was not done fearlessly. For those who applaud my braveness in taking on the unknown, I am quick to tell them that half of my decisions were simply reactions to things out of my control. I am rigid but I can adapt. Both attributes have been paramount to my steadfast decision to never work an ordinary job again. Curveballs would only begin to describe what has been thrown at me as I have done my best to move forward.

I am sitting on the cusp of a life-changing decision – one that should reward me for the past thousand days of feeling I can do that which I have wanted and make a living at it. I am elated and wonder if I would be anywhere this happy if I had stayed in the suit-and-tie-world I felt for two decades was exactly what I wanted to do.

Very little of it has been easy and here, where I am now, it is obviously worth it. If I had known it would take this long and all I had to do was persevere it would have been a cakewalk.  But that’s the point; we rarely, if ever, know when the payoff of what we work for will be. So we soldier on, hoping sometimes against hope that what we seek is just around that next corner.  Here an obligatory passage about enjoying the journey on the way to the end is too easy and would be a smidgen trite. We all know we should stop and smell the roses. I am hardly needed to tell you this. And sometimes, honestly, those roses stink.

Focusing on a goal and sinking our teeth into it deeply all while shrugging off the stings of arrows is what gets many of us through each tough day. You cannot do so while ignoring that around you but being aware and reacting is different from knowing and being distracted. If you have a goal, and you think it is worthwhile, then do not let anyone or anything stand in your way.  Life, like running, rarely rewards those who sit on the sidelines.

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