Dr. Kenney’s Friday 5 Spot
On Fridays I like to share some of the experiences I’ve had during the week with patients and in my personal life that I’ve found significant in some way. I like to share them in hopes that you might find value in them and have something resonate with you in your life.
Something I think about often. Years ago, I read a book about running and the author told a story that has stuck with me from that day forward. Frank Shorter was a gold medal, Olympic marathon runner in the 70’s. The author of this book was with Frank as they watched a group of runners training. One of the more talented runners slightly cut across a corner as he was completing a workout. When Frank saw this, he said to the author “he’ll never be a champion, champions never cut corners.”
Every single time I come around a corner on a run I think of this. It also reinforces one of my beliefs which is “how you do anything is how you’ll do everything.” In other words, if you take shortcuts, you will do so in all aspects of your life. Conversely, when you give even the smallest tasks your full attention and effort, you are training yourself to do that in life.
Some thoughts on courage. I got into an interesting talk about courage the other day with a patient of mine. I liked what she had to say, and she enjoyed my thoughts and asked me to share them in my 5 Spot.
Most people think about showing courage as a very cinematic event – an act is performed; everyone cheers and it’s an instant lovefest. It would be great if this were the case but it’s far more likely that when you show courage you will be going against what is accepted or common. Therefore, you may be ridiculed, mocked, or disliked for what you’ve done because it challenges the actions or beliefs of those around you. As a result, true courage is probably easier to spot after the fact when times or events have had time to unfold. What is considered “wrong” today, is courage later.
I believe everyone has the capacity to be courageous though it is found in short supply these days. Courage does not need to come from anything elaborate or someone special. It can be something simple and can be performed by any of us. A great example of this would be Rosa Parks who decided she would not move when she was asked. Displaying courage is crucial, make sure you are acting accordingly.
A lesson I’ve learned from running that is crucial in life. Logging as many miles as I have over the years, I can tell you that not every run is created equal. Some days things progress effortlessly, others feel as if each mile takes forever. On the tough days, I often experience a strong desire to simply stop running and rest. Many times, I have given in and done just that. What I notice on these days though, is once you stop, you begin to stop more frequently, you think you’re more tired than you are, you need more rest, etc.
The lesson this has taught me, is to keep going when it gets tough. If I do this, I find that powering through a challenging period gives me strength on the other side. It changes my momentum and before I know it, I feel great. It’s as if I needed to prove to my mind, that my body was stronger than it thought, and then it gives up telling me to stop. The exact same run can have two completely different outcomes in performance simply by staying strong during a few tough minutes. Life is the same – if you don’t want to have to start over, than don’t stop – you’ll get stronger, and your results will be better!
A type of person to limit in your life. There is a type of person that I often refer to as a “time hog.” The hallmark signs of such a person are negativity, constantly talking only about themselves, no respect for your time, and no desire to learn or ask about you. Most often, it’s as if these types of people will have 20 minutes worth of material they want to get out. They will do so whether you’re interested or not and regardless of whether it’s a convenient time for you. Most people that are time hogs may not even know they are, they have just become trained to act in that fashion and don’t realize how they are perceived.
Most of us have a desire to be nice, kind and caring so it can become challenging to deal with such a person. My advice is to do whatever you must to limit your exposure to such people. Not because they are bad people, simply because they will drain your energy and so much of your time. I know people like this (patients and people in my life), and I am always polite but if you were to rewind our interaction and watch it, you’d notice I got away (escaped!) quickly. Try not to be a “time hog” and certainly do your best to avoid them.
Some quotes I love.
“The freedoms you surrender today are the freedoms your grandchildren will never know existed.”
“Obsessed is just a word the lazy use to describe the dedicated.” – Russel Warren
“People will summarize your life in once sentence – pick it now.” – John C. Maxwell
“Life will only change when you become more committed to your dreams rather than your comfort zone.”
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