To our own self be true…

A rainy windy run today! In fact it was quite cold… Especially half way round when I was running into the wind, with the rain tumbling down… I gave myself the out to take the left hand road, that was coming soon at the bottom of the hill – if I wanted to – which would take me back for a 10k run rather than a 13k run I had planned…
It was the giving myself the opportunity to do less, which meant I carried on in a relaxed fashion, and as the left hand turn approached, I checked in – yes I was wet, and a little bit chilly – but I was enjoying the run and feeling good, and not that cold…

So I went past the road and carried out the original plan and enjoyed my training immensely – I was wearing my skinners socks too, which made it more comfortable for my feet, and I was able to run along a bit faster on the ouchie, uneven road which kept me warm.

Of course I recognise that sometimes we are on a route where it appears there is no out… But relaxing is still the key, while we make the journey…

I can remember years ago when I was racing and had been consistently winning a series of races… I was having a bit of a battle, this particular day, to maintain my winning streak and so I let go and decided that I didn’t mind if the top place went to another runner… I let my foot off the throttle, and then found myself imagining the headline in the local paper…

‘Gates surrenders winning streak’ and I didn’t mind – but then, as I ran along, I thought, ‘I might as well see if I can maintain it, and create a different headline…!’ I found a new gear and went on to win once again…

This of course was in a race where I had the capacity to win… But we can apply the same inner conversations wherever we are and in whatever situation.

The secret is to not make winning or doing well – or anything we do – a moral issue… There are so many statements about ‘never being a quitter’ or ‘carrying on whatever’; but really and truly our life and whether we carry on or stop anything is completely up to us – it is our own journey.

And it is not for someone else to decide whether it is the right or wrong thing. If we are happy with our decision then if this touches someone else’s belief system, and they show disapproval or disappointment – then the ultimate place of peace is to recognise that this is to do with them, not us.

I had a lot of practise with this as a younger person, as I kept making decisions that disappointed my father; but when I review my life I am happy I made the decisions I did. I am also glad of the inner conviction that I was born with, that allowed me to continue with them even in the face of dissent, and not much life experience.

There are times to leave jobs, change route, change direction, leave relationships – to stop.

And as I mentioned earlier, sometimes when we know that we want to stop something, but there doesn’t seem an immediate way to do this, for all manner of reasons…

In this instance, acknowledging our feelings and relaxing into the space we are in, accepting what is can help us reach either the end of that particular challenge… Or it can give us time to figure our next steps; or it can help us to find a way to be in the step of the experience however hard it is….

Because there are also times to carry on…

I have carried on with all manner of projects and situations when they have been hard, because I know that I am on the course of my soul…

Only we will truly know what is right for us, or when we must honour the course we are on, or change direction.

But first of all we may need to examine our stories and our beliefs, to really examine our paradigm… For this is where we will find out the ideas and ideals that we were given – and we can then look at where we internalised these ideas from… Was it from our family, our religion, our school, our culture, our society, our friends?

And then we can investigate whether they hold true for us now.

It is worth going deeply into the stories we tell, and those that are told about us… Do they resonate? Where did we get them from?

Where did I get the idea for instance that ‘No one remembers who came 2nd…’ That one caused me a lot of stress and distress – until I shed it for good… And even if the statements are true, does it really matter..?

To our own self be true… This is all that matters.

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