Went out on this beautiful day to run at my favorite spot, a bridle trail in a nearby state park.
Would have done this regardless, because (thankfully) running is now part of life, and though I am tempted more and more lately to skip it, I know how unforgiving I will be if I ever let all this hard work fall by the wayside.
But today I needed to run. Without it, I was likely to melt down or implode.
I’ve been hauling around a top-heavy load of stress over run-of-the-mill life things (making a living, etc.), an unusual load of frustration about several relationships, and a load of sadness about a handful of situations I have no control over involving people I care deeply about.
So I got out on the trail in the sunny cold today, packing all of that unwieldy baggage, and tried my best to huff and puff out all of the toxic (useless) angst.
When I run stressed, I usually do what I imagine is a very Deepak Chopra-ish thing – narrating in my head each breath in and each breath out – i.e., ‘stress…OUT’ …’calm, IN.’ Confidence, IN; fear, OUT. And so on.
I swore to myself at about mile 2.5 of 3.5 that I would park my frustration and stress at the gate, not haul it back home with me.
For most of that last mile, my brain was still churning with frustrations, anger, self-flagellation … thoughts of all the times lately when I have been a poster child for that saying, “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”
It’s embarrassing to realize how often I end up gnashing my teeth after a situation played out EXACTLY THE WAY IT DID LAST TIME. At 47, there’s really no excuse for not getting a clue the first time around – well, except for that dense thing we call human nature.
I saw the gate around the bend in the trail, and I was still replaying every single thought I’d been hauling around for the past month. I stepped up the Deepak huffing and puffing of baggage routine, and it worked – mostly. I walked past the gate and made a deal with myself to – as best as is humanly possible – stop wasting so much time and energy on negativity and try to quit that definition-of-insanity habit.
Onward and upward.