Choices: Making, Changing and Owning Them

We make choices all the time. Some are small, like deciding what to have for breakfast. Others are bigger and have more of an impact on our lives. But, even if we sometimes wish we could, we can’t escape them. Even refusing to make a choice, is making one.

The good news is that, no matter how scary some choices may seem, none are set in stone. We can always try something for a little while and then decide if it’s for us or not. I was just telling a friend that maybe life choices are like finding a good pair of running shoes: you have to try a few before you find the right fit.

Making Choices

In my last post, I wrote about not being happy, feeling I’d sacrificed a lot while chasing my running goals. I felt lonely and I wasn’t sure if the goals I was after were really what I wanted. So, I made a commitment to try a few changes: let go of formal training / coaching, run more for fun, hang out with friends, volunteer, and start dating.

I’m proud to say that I was brave enough to try it all (yes, even online dating!). I pushed outside of my comfort zone and I’ve learned a lot about myself as a result. I also met some great people and had fun!

Changing Choices

Maybe you can see where I’m going with this? Yes, maybe sometimes you need to let go of something to realize how much you want it. While I still want to spend more time with friends and volunteer, I’ve found out, over the last few weeks, that I’m not ready to give up on my running goals just yet. So I’ve decided to go back to chasing them.

As part of that decision, I will also hold off on my search for that special someone. As long as I spend enough time with friends, I don’t feel the need to date right now. I also know that, while focused on my sport, I wouldn’t be able to be the partner that I’d want to be. Two-time US Olympian Megan Kalmoe, summed this up pretty perfectly in this older blog post. She imagined what her online dating profile would say. I love this part: “I will always, with no exceptions–ever–choose training, eating, sleeping and recovery over you. Call me?” You get the picture.

Owning Choices

So, was this all just a waste of time? Not at all! I’ve learned that, even if we end up deciding that the choices we made weren’t entirely right for us, we’ll still learn and benefit from having tried them. For example, I now know that chasing my running goals is really what I want to do. For me. I no longer have to question if it’s just something I feel like I have to do. Also, I don’t feel like I’m sacrificing not having a partner for running anymore. It’s now a conscious decision that I’ve made and that I’m happy with. I truly own those choices and that’s a great feeling. I have my answers and I know what I want!

What Now?

The new changes may not all have felt quite right for me, but neither did what I had before. The result (for now) is a mix of both. More changes may be needed in the future, but I guess that’s all part of life. My message is, if you’re not sure about something, give it a shot! What do you have to lose? Even if it doesn’t stick, you might still gain something out of it like I did!

This past year really has been one of many changes for me. It has been at times painful, but also a great learning experience. But, best of all, I think it has put me in a great place to start 2019! Bring it on!

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