In his book What I talk about when I talk about running
, Haruki Murakami famously said that he doesn’t think about anything but running when running. Apparently, elite runners gave a very similar answer
. This probably explains why I am not part of the elite and will never be; when I run I think about many things. I think about my latest writing project, I solve problems, I work out the points on which I am stuck, I make plans about my finances and yes, I think about success.
Today, I was thinking about the three main AHAs that I wouldn’t have had if I was not running. These are:
AHA 1: People succeed when they compare themselves with absolute goals not with other people. This is something I learned by reading the stories of top athletes – they never compete with other athletes, they compete with the clock. This holds for any achievement: to get there we ought to set absolute goals which are ours and ours alone. What do you want? Where to you want to be?
AHA 2: ‘Ambition’ and ‘delusion’ are separated by a very thin line. I am someone who doesn’t get going on ‘realistic’ goals – they are somehow never exciting enough, never brave enough and never challenging enough. Have audacious goals is my game because even achieving some of these gives such a high. But I have learned that this is also a tricky game because goals ought to be audacious but not delusional. Running a marathon in under 4 h 30 min for me is ambitious, winning a marathon is delusional. Becoming wealthy is my ambition, having net worth equal or even close to that of the likes of Bill Gates is delusional.
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