The other side of the fence
During my years of participating in sports events like triathlons, I was mostly competing on some type of course or circuit.
Working with humans on a daily basis, I greatly enjoy seeing them light up when performing well in any area of their life, as well as feeling good in their own skin.
The bright side of having an injury or inability to take part in a race is the fact that you can give back. The best example is an American lady I saw (and heard!) during IRONMAN 70.3 Wiesbaden, a while back. Central European crowds are not exactly great at cheering, compared to US standards. Most Europeans need some form of stimulation, someone to show them it’s okay to let go and just express themselves in whatever way they want.
This woman, standing in the middle of the park we ran through, was one of those stimulators. She was just from another planet. I am sure if you asked any participant of that year’s race, she or he would know about her. She was a major reason the run course had such a positive and happy vibe that day. The lady would scream out every participants name, cheer them on in a variety of languages and give you a backpack full of energy to run strong, until you saw her again on the next lap.
The spectators around her, at first skeptical, had no choice but to eventually surrender to her cheering madness. Before I knew it, the next time I passed that spot, she had a group of kids, an older looking couple and others around her. All inspired by her energy and positivity, they imitated her and took great joy in charming a smile on tired looking athletes running past.
The influence we have on others is essential and cannot be disregarded. I try to do at least one good thing a day to a stranger, no matter how small, believe me, they will appreciate it massively and think about you later on. By doing that, they probably feel inclined to do the same to others. I like to believe this ends up in a never-ending chain of positive events, ultimately making the world a happier and more caring place. Looking around at the faces of some people in the morning - sad, angry and depressed by their life situation, I wonder why they put up with it. I decided a long time ago that I will not live the life steered by my surroundings and expectations of others. It seemed like a path to no-man’s land. I still haven’t mastered it and I have to become much more ruthless with those kind of decisions, not bathe myself in the comfort of having stability you are not really fulfilled with.
They say, “live life like it’s your last”, which is not really applicable every day, but the overall message is to do what you love and live a happy life. That is the purpose of all of us anyway. I found my passion in being with family and friends, moving through the most spectacular nature via bike, running shoes or in the water, on the most remote and special places I can find. They will form stories that I can tell my grandkids one day; not how I sat 12 hours in an office each day, just to drive home in a Maserati.
So, I might have gone a bit off the rails with my brain here, but the overall message is to make the best out of every situation. Find the good in it, no matter how unrealistic it seems at the time. Make your life special and unique, we never know when it’s over unfortunately.
So take action and go for it!
All the best and have a great day!