Thursday, May 04, 2006


Over the last few days, I've wanted to blog about several things, but haven't. I want to be clear when I write about something, and I want it to be meaningful, so I struggle with what to blog and what not to. So I guess I'll just lay out what's been on my mind lately.
Dealing with the loss of our baby has been another hardship that many have to endure in life. It hurts, and strangely enough, it brings out other insecurities that we have, but it isn't insurmountable. We all have to learn how to deal with disappointments in life, but some are harder to swallow than others. Of course most of us come to the realization that we'll not be rich beyond our wildest dreams and our jobs may not even be what we'd like, but we find a way to move on anyway. We also may wonder "what if..." about many things in our past, but most normal functional adults find happiness in other things and try not to dwell on the disappointments in life. Lately, I've been wondering about some of my priorities in life and why I do what I do. Exercising is a smart thing to do because it's a stress reliever and the elevated heartrates are good for my heart and metabolism, etc... Then there's the competitive aspect of what I do. To really be competitive, I have to put in more hours of training and train harder I do for "maintenance" workouts and this takes away time from other things in my life. As I get older, it becomes more of a problem as other things move up on the priority list. This is frustrating because I don't feel I'm satisfied with my performance(s) in competitions. I don't know if I'll ever be completely satisfied and that scares me. It's easier to resolve myself to things I know I'll never have, but the things that ARE attainable, but are just out of reach (or seem to be) are starting to wear on my patience and tranquility. Once, I heard happiness defined as "Being content with what you have while working towards what you want." But what if you never achieve what you want? Then what?
Settling for mediocrity makes me so ill to my core that I find it intolerable. Especially for myself, but I find myself compromising all the time. Yeah everyone has to deal with this in life, but I HATE knowing that I've wasted potential.


angie's pink fuzzy said...

love the posters!!!

hmm, have you wasted potential? or used it toward something that your integrity felt was more important?

Ben, aka BadBen said...

Angie makes a great point, and I love how she wrote it.

Ben, I'm a generation older than you, and I still have these thoughts and feelings all of the time. Should've; could've; would've...I think it's part of my personality make-up. How I make peace with myself is knowing what is really important: the people in my life, and doing my best to do my best with what I bring to the table at a given moment.

I have resigned myself to the fact that I can be competitive, but not in everything that I want to excel at...there's just not enough time or energy to do so. I know many individuals who lost their marriage and family by dedicating their lives to training for: triathlons, ultras, cycling, etc. To what end? Are they truly happy? You can never get to the top of any endeavor and remain at the top; it's always elusive.

I prioritize what I want to spend my energies on. I cherish my time with family and friends (and even my dog) the most, so they always come first.

shliknik said...

The way I look at running (and the races I enter) is I do it for fun. I could train harder, but I'm using my time (for what I consider) more important things (my illustration).

After a race, I always know I could do better if I could have put in the extra time, but I feel better knowing I haven't 'wasted' my time, but used it for something else.

My additude about running (and exercise in general) has changed as I've gotten older. I now enjoy it for the sake of exercise...and appreciate being able to do it. So what if I could have finished a few places higher if I would have put running a higher priority.

Running is a stress shouldn't add it.

Maybe you're starting to feel the same way.