Letting Go of Success, Letting Go of Failure

In running, sometimes, it is not quicker (more) breath for oxygen. It is deeper breath for oxygen. It is going deeper, breathing deeper. To the next level of rest. To the next level of concentration. To the next level of peace, of flow. I thought of this during worship this morning in church.

I see the relation like this. . . I arrive at church. . . from the morning. . . from the car. . . from the craziness of the week, BREATHING HEAVY. By the second worship song, I’m GOING DEEPER. By the fourth worship song, I’m BREATHING DEEPER. It is only at that 4th song that I am ready to begin transformation sometimes. I am ready to listen to the words God wants me to hear. But, I have a choice to maintain my HEAVY BREATHING, an almost demanding of oxygen or I can surrender, concentrate, breath deep. The breathing, surrender and concentration are all elements of an ultra race. I must choose. Here is how I have been working it out for the past several weeks.

Immediately following my 50K race in February, I was overwhelmed with nerves, fear, uncertainty about my upcoming 50 mile race. Whether I trained correctly or not?  What have I chosen to do? Was I setting myself up for failure? Was I going to finish? I hung on to these doubts for about two weeks. Then, I listened to Bobby McGee’s short video, “4 Pathways to Endurance Success”.  He voiced my feelings in pathway #1, “Anxiety. What am I afraid of?”

We are afraid of not meeting the outcome that we believe we are capable of. Increased expectation of what we are afraid of is mostly sourced in not being able to have full control of the variables that will lead to an outcome that we really want. . . If you control the variables you can and execute to the full extent of your abilities, then it makes it easier to accept the outcome.

He connected to the athlete in me in pathway #4, “Peak Sensation”.

Can we deal? How tough are you? When it becomes challenging and tough, tell myself this is why I signed up. . . to overcome my own perceptions of what my limitations are!!

Time to plug in the positive affirmations, I am going to finish. I want to run this race. It will be an exciting adventure. I can see myself crossing the finish line. I will run strong. I will eat well. I will have a smile on my face. I love hills. I love running. I love distance. I am trained. I am ready.

Then I found an article in Women’s Running, April 2014, titled, Head Check. Here is a quote that helped to continue to move me forward, past the negative thinking.

Confidence is linked to how we talk to ourselves–this stems from things we were told growing up or that we picked up indirectly. I think the interesting thing about self-talk is that the message someone gives themselves might not even be true anymore. It may NEVER have been true. But people start creating these tapes for themselves, especially when they’re trying to follow through with a goal. (Barbara Walker Ph.D)

Finally, Dr. Tamara Moore sums it up for me in her post on March 11, 2014 Passport to Commitment: Focused Action.

Commitment, once you speak it into existence, alters your behavior and produces results. It guides your choices daily. . . Why you don’t have what you say you want is normally due to your attachment to looking good, being right and playing it safe. You cannot do everything, but you can do what counts. The only things that count are those actions that move you toward your desired outcomes. True commitment brings great rewards: success, satisfaction and personal transformation.

“Playing it safe” for me goes back to the first ‘pathway of endurance success’, naming my fear of not meeting the outcome that I believe I am capable of because I do not have control. My focus needs to be on execution and the process.

I have spent the last 3 Sundays at church, during quiet prayer time, letting go of success and letting go of failure. Success to me will be finishing this race. Failure to me is playing it safe, being afraid.  Jesus will be with me in both success and failure. I do not disappoint Him. I will not disappoint Him. I can completely know going into this race that Jesus will be with me, during every mile. He will be my strength. Looking forward to this challenge. I also cannot wait to tell you all about it!!

Stay tuned. . .

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