Sunday, July 10, 2011

My Post-Divorce Challenge

One of my July 4th post-divorce traditions is to run a local 10K.  I run it with 59,999 of my closest friends.  It’s the biggest 10K in the world.  It’s a huge party with music and crowds cheering along the way.  It’s fun.  And it’s a challenge for me.  Although I’ve been running for many years, I just started running in races 7 years ago.  I’m not trying to break any records except my own, but starting out in Atlanta’s July heat and facing 6.2 increasingly hot miles is a stretch.  When I finish I feel great.  They say that finishing a marathon means there’s not a lot you can’t do.  Well, I say finishing a 10K means the same thing.

I’m a bit reluctant to juxtapose this experience with the US women’s soccer team winning their game against Brazil today, but humor me.  It was an incredible game with heartbreaking calls and a tying goal in, literally, the 122nd minute of the 2nd overtime.  It was a beautiful display of grit, the combination of perseverance and passion for a goal (no pun intended).  Those women were not giving up any time soon and you could see it in their faces.

In fact, finishing most difficult things can leave you with the feeling that you can conquer the world.  Challenging yourself is a way to get tough.  Challenging yourself makes you more confident. It doesn’t have to be a physical challenge.  How about learning to do something you never really thought you could do, like speak French or play the guitar?  Persevering and getting it done lead to the end result of increased confidence and toughness.  So accept my challenge:  pick a challenge for yourself and see it through.  It’ll help you get that mental toughness and grit you need for the post-divorce challenges.

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