The People You Meet

I am probably up before you are. As the heat intensifies, I move my morning start time up to 6 AM, which means I am up at 5 to get my mind out of hibernation mode.

There aren’t many folks out in the park at that time. Just the die hards. Most are far more ft than I am. A few at my level. And a few who are, like me, building back in various stages. Like the stroke survivor who puts in up to 5 laps around the park, depending on what she can endure. Or the elderly gentleman who is flexible enough to step with one step onto the picnic table surface as part of his warmup routine.

In the mental part of this process, I have been thinking about what drives me. I am well aware that the majority of my friends and family do not think I either can or will complete my journey to a half marathon in November. They don’t believe. And I get that. A lot of tilts at windmills, a lot of crushed dreams. There’s reason for cynicism.

And it hit me today: in a curious way, I actually FEED off of that. One reason I am being successful is because my entire life, despite trying to be a positive individual, I have been taught and conditioned to be driven by NEGATIVE energy. So when I am surrounded by positive energy, I’m not equipped to handle it. This is one reason I don’t handle compliments well.

How much different outcomes could have come about if I had been fed the positive instead? If I had been motivated and driven by positive expectations instead? More importantly, how can I be that for those coming behind me?

The truth is, I have succeeded to this point even beyond my own expectations. To the point where I can sit and wonder what the possibilities even ARE. But between now and November, I need to change my fuel. The negativity surrounding me can get me across that line, but it won’t keep me there.

Be the positive.

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