Quote of the moment

"We are not problems waiting to be solved, but potential waiting to unfold.”

Frederic Laloux

Possibility Reminders

If you would like to receive my occasional coaching tip 'A Mile in My Shoes' or 'Daily Possibility Quote' by email then you can SUBSCRIBE HERE. You can also delve into the coaching tip ARCHIVES to read all my past tips online. Enjoy!

Latest Tweets
Useful Links

Breaking out of the container

50 more days until I hit my 1,000th consecutive day of running a mile each day.

I don’t know why 1,000 feels like such a big milestone to me.

I think it’s the size of the number. A thousand days seems like a bigger deal than three years does, although I’ll still have over three months to go after I’ve completed my thousandth day before I reach my three year mark.

Anyway, although it hasn’t gone away and I’m still icing it every day after my run, I do feel that my right shin problem is contained for the time being.

What does it actually mean – to contain something?

I guess it’s about putting something right round it so that every surface of it is covered. A problem or issue that isn’t contained means that it’s still unpredictable.

There is something scary, or at least worrying, to us humans about having something that’s not contained. We have no idea what might happen next and we hate uncertainty.

Disaster, catastrophe and devastation could arise out of unpredictable or uncontained. But then again so could spontaneous discovery, breakthrough and transformation.

Life itself can't be contained.

If you’ve ever made detailed plans, I wouldn’t mind betting that life has broken open the container of your plans and thrown in a large spanner from time to time.

If life was completely predictable and we always knew exactly what would happen, I don’t think there would be much room for fun.

While I'm pleased that my right shin problem currently feels contained, there is also a side effect that by containing my right shin problem, a part of me, and indeed the way I am currently running, is also being contained.

One of the things that I love about running is the feeling of total freedom it gives me. When I run I'm out of any container I, or anyone else, has put me in.

Indeed, my favourite runs have been ones where I’ve decided where I’m going to run while I’m actually running.

There is a pure joy in making it up as you go along, a feeling of being completely uncontained.

I’m looking forward to my 1,000th day of running in 50 days time (hopefully) and to running and living fully uncontained again soon.

Where are you allowing yourself to be contained, and what would it be like to break free of that container?


Tricks of the mind

It's been a tough week for my mile each day.

Although I have kept going each day doing my mile, it has been the minimum mile-and-a-bit circuit for the last five days.

A niggle that I experienced in my right shin a couple of weeks ago had steadily got worse, such that the past few days I've ended up hobbling round my little circuit a good 3 or 4 minutes per mile slower.

It's funny how our minds take a basic fact, such as my shin is painful when I run and even when I walk, and expand that fact into a whole story and a certain outcome.

For example, the last time I had bad shin pain was in 2006 whilst training for the London marathon. I had upped my training quite drastically, running regularly with some faster colleagues, which meant I was constantly pushing myself to keep up. I had also started running on roads a lot, whereas I had always tried to mix in some off road surfaces on my runs before.

The cause of the pain in 2006 was eventually diagnosed as a stress fracture in my right tibia (the same shin that has been troubling me the last few days), resulting in me having to withdraw from the marathon and not being able to run at all for six months.

So where did my brain go as soon as I had the acute pain that reduced me to a hobble this week?

It was quick off the mark to tell me that I must have refractured the same bone and that any day now I wouldn't be able to run at all, because it could never repair unless I stopped completely.

Unsurprisngly I think, I found this a little on the depressing side.

But nevertheless, I persevered with my minimal mile-and-a-bit at a slower than slow pace, and miracle of miracles today, although still tender, my shin allowed me to run at least two minues quicker than I have managed for the past four days.

So perhaps there's another explanation? After all the fact is that I have had shin pain that has stopped me being able to run properly for the past few days. A separate fact is that I did indeed fracture my tibia in the same shin six years ago.

Despite the best workings of my internal saboteur, maybe those two facts are completely unrelated.

For the past 927 days I have had several twinges and problems that have slowed me to something not much quicker than a walk, but so far (he said with crossed fingers) my trusty mile has kept me going and through the other side.

Long may it continue.

Could your mind be connecting two separate facts into a certainty that just might not be certain after all?


Frank Sinatra had it right

On this morning's run, I was thinking once again about the importance of habits, and how running my daily mile is key to me living the life I want to live.

Then I thought that some people are so focused on habits, actions and doing that they lose sight of where it is they're going and why they're going there in the first place.

The extreme example of this are those who are so career driven that their family life suffers. They think they're doing what they do for their family and their future until, if they're not careful, one day they realise that they've lost their family, and the future they now see is much bleaker than what they'd imagined.

On the other end of the spectrum are those who live their lives only in the being perspective, constantly visualising exactly what they want and why, but they're hopeless when it comes to doing. They're waiting for a brighter tomorrow until they feel right and until everything is aligned before they will take powerful action, and tomorrow never arrives.

In the song "Strangers in the Night", at one point Frank Sinatra famously sang the immortal line "Do be do be do".

Here's where I think Frank had it right.

They key to living a successful fulfilled life is to find the right balance of doing and being.

So for me my day starts with doing my morning run. My challenge is to then be in action whilst remembering why I'm doing what I'm doing and where I'm going.

Success is a constant flip flop between the action of doing and the focusing of being.

Where on the doing / being spectrum do you live, and how might you tune the balance to give you just the right amount of "do be do be do"?


The mental crutch

This morning I completed the last run of my 30th month of my daily mile.

It's been a good month running wise.

I ran 99.9 miles in 30 days, running 9 times every week except one, when I only ran eight times.

The other thing that I've managed to do, for the first time since I tore the cartilage and ligament in my left knee back in 1985, is abandon my neoprene knee support. Thanks for the prompt Sarah! :-)

I've been running all this week without my trusty knee support, including a 9-miler cross country, which is great.

It just goes to show that my knee support has been more of a mental crutch than a physical one, and it's probably been that way for quite a long time.

I wonder where else I'm using a mental crutch that I don't really need?

And what about you?

Could you have a limiting belief that you are using as a crutch when it actually outserved its usefulness many years ago?


Running up that hill

A week ago now I clocked my 900th consecutive day of running at least a mile each day.

Leading up to my 900th day I was expecting to write a celebratory post describing what a sense of achievement I felt and how good it felt, but somehow that just didn't happen.

The analogy that best describes what it was like for me completing my 900th daily mile is that it was like my milestone occurred half way up a particularly long steep hill, so I didn’t feel like I had the energy to celebrate as well as to continue running up the hill.

You know what’s it’s like when you’re running up a hill that seems to be going on forever? Sometimes you have to dig in, take baby steps and just concentrate on the next step or two.

Looking up for the top of the hill or trying to work out what comes after the hill just seems too much, like it could make you give up, so all you can do is take the next step, and then the one after that.

Well I’ve finally come over the crown of the hill and I’m at last able to get my breathing back to a deeper rhythm rather than the shallower pattern that I needed to ascend the hill.

Also, you know how when you’re going up a steep hill it’s not so easy to hold a conversation, well it was also like that but now I’ve got my breath back and I’m able to speak again.

Once again running and life are proving to me that both teach me lessons that are totally parallel.

Oh, and of course I completed my 900th daily mile a week ago, and am now on the road to day 1,000.


Page 1 ... 3 4 5 6 7 ... 65 Next 5 Entries »