In order to "keep it between the ditches," you kind of need to know where you're going first.
What drives you?
What’s your motivating factor?
This keeps coming up for me, personally, as I’ve hit one of those 41-year-old-fitness-slumps. Just been doing some soul searching to find the what and why. Who is obvious; how depends on expected outcome; and when is as soon as I figure those first two out.
I was a pretty avid Crossfitter for several years, flirted with running for a few months, trained and competed in some weightlifting competitions… then, thud. Stuck. I enjoy riding trails on my bike, so I do that. And I stay fairly active in general. But, I’m always better with a goal. Something to look forward to. A competition or race; an event or time to prove something. Probably comes from growing up playing sports year-round. So, as I’m exercising this mental quandary, it gets me looking outward, too. What drives other people?
Money, fame, research findings, raising great kids, having an impact on the next generation through teaching or service, writing a screenplay, rescuing dogs… there’s a greater “thing” out there that surely we are all pursuing. Right? Or no? This is where the slump comes in. You don’t get in your car or hop on your bike without a place to go and a (at least somewhat) laid-out plan on how to get there. We all hit a slump, usually inadvertently. So, ya just shut the car off and figure out where it is you were trying to go in the first place.
Heck, it happens in our professional lives, as well. Myself included. I ran a career for 15 years and got stale, chasing the same old thing… which ends up being more $ at the next job. Then I flipped the script (with the help of my wife) and changed my whole outlook on what “work” and “career” actually mean. I did something I liked, that made me feel like I was actually helping others be better. Then, my wife flipped the script and started a meal delivery business to help people eat better without sacrificing the time they hold so dear to pursue that thing that’s driving them. That was 5 years ago. There have been ups and downs as a startup, no doubt about it. But what remains – though we sometimes have to remind ourselves – is the drive to help others with one of the easiest-to-forget currencies we humans have. Time. That’s really the “X” that we solve for. The sourcing, the shopping, the planning, the prep, the cooking and the clean up. We do all of that. You spend time on your family, making it to the gym after a long day of work, going out of town with friends, working after hours on your own dream job that’ll get you where you wanna be. We got this part.
So what is it that drives you? How are you getting there? Don’t forget to not forget.