Monday, September 24, 2012

My New Motto: Just Enjoy Doing It!

Day 49, Sept. 24, 2012

Today I'm 192.6 pounds of rolling thunder.

Sometimes I think it's more like blogging for my life. As a contract writer/editor, you move from one big thing to the next big thing always taking that leap of faith that there will be a next big thing. The reality is that sometimes it's not so much a leap of faith as a push into the chasm of "what the heck am I going to do next to put bread on the table?"

Someday, before all my grown-up days are played out, I hope someone will explain to me the difference between a passion and just the things we like to do every day. Am I passionate about running? I don't know. I enjoy it. It makes me feel good. It makes me feel fit and sleep better. I miss it when I don't do it for a day.

But I have no desire to race. My days of have any real speed are well behind me. I just like doing it. Maybe unlike Nike's "Just Do It" motto, my credo should be "Just Enjoy Doing It." So if you see that on a T-shirt somewhere, remember it was me, me, me who brought it to you first.

I was brought up in the sports tradition of being stoic in both victory and defeat. It was the old never let them see you crack mentality that was fostered in a previous generation. 

Sort of a Bjorn Borg -- yes; Jimmy Connors -- not so much mindset.

We learned to check our emotions at the door, and if you did score a touchdown, make a basket or win a game, you were expected to act like you'd done it before. No fist pumping, tweet chirping, Facebook posting vibrato. Doing well was its own reward.

It's hard to know if this was fertile ground for growing many passions.

You can tell people who have a passion in their lives. It might be their work, their art or their music. You can tell because it occupies every corner of the being, both conscious and subconscious.

I admire that in people. Our older son told me the other day that he has the unique problem of being good at many things, so it makes the struggle to choose a college a little more difficult. And recently a neighbor talked about her child's passion for music but lack of academic prowess.

Hmmm, which is better? To have so many options but no single passion, or a passion that drives your every waking moment? I suppose philosophers and great thinkers have pondered this issue for generations. I know in my personal life being a jack-of-many-trades has been both a blessing and a curse. Many times I've been referred to as a good writer for a photographer and a good photographer for a writer.

But I'm not sure either is a true passion. It's just the things I enjoy doing and feel I have a little bit of talent at. If somebody branded it a passion, I'm not quite sure I could live up to that moniker.

So is running my passion? I enjoy the clip-clop pace of my daily run and the endorphin rush that is associated with it. But a passion? I'm not quite there yet.

Regardless of your passion, if you see the world's slowest human out on the streets today, give me a wave.

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