Look ahead and start again

I received some feedback recently at work which has been really difficult to acknowledge. The feedback was harsh. Inside I was crushed.

I’ve taken a few days to try & understand the situation and see how I could do things differently. And as always, I turned to my blog. I was reading some older posts when I started to recognize some of the comments that people had fed back about me reflected in some of the posts I had written about myself and my running.

When it comes to my running, I am unforgiving when I fail; I am highly critical about myself; I am hard on myself; I only see faults, never anything good…

Oh my word. Yup! I am that person.

I’ve often said that the corporate world is not for sissies. It’s especially tough when there are so many goals to achieve, so many deadlines and expectations to fulfill. Being an A-type personality doesn’t help. Through all the chaos, my only sense of security was to increase control of the work, micro manage, be over-critical and not open to failure. It’s all there, I can see it now.

The same way that I need to sometimes go back to simply enjoying my running, needs to be the same way I approach this situation. I need to step back and understand where it’s going wrong. It needs a fresh new start and perhaps focus on the positives and the successes.

The same day I received the feedback at work was the same day I made the decision to start on a clean slate with my running. New beginnings. New running goals. New start.

Everything in life can be fixed. It’s not the end of the world, right? It’s quite a relief to be given the chance to start again.

Thank goodness for waterproof mascara.

For runners, it’s more than just corporate stress

For those of you who work in a corporate environment, I’m sure you’ll agree with me that 2011 and 2012 have been really tough. Since the economic downturn, it’s as if companies got a big wake-up call and since then, it’s become all about survival.

But with that, and all the many shake-ups, restructures and retrenchments it has also brought with it a change in corporate culture. It’s become a place where people are so busy pushing out work and trying to keep ahead of the competition that nothing else matters.

The sad thing for me is that people have stopped talking to one another. And I don’t mean talking… I mean really talking. Engaging with each other and finding out things about each other beyond work.

I think that sometimes we forget that work is not the be-all and end-all of most people’s lives.

Other than those that are busy planning weddings, pregnancies, sending kids off to varsity, I’m referring specifically to those that are training for the Two Oceans and Comrades marathons. It’s crunch time when qualifying times need to be in, the bulk of the training is almost at its peak and the nerves are setting in as we countdown to the biggest races on the running calendars.

I watch these colleagues at work, focussed on projects, in meetings and I sometimes wonder if their minds aren’t a million miles away. How do they possibly still make time to run, be it in the morning or evening when meetings are booked at ridiculous hours of the day? I sense their irritation when their colleagues come to work with flu, knowing that they can simply not afford to get sick now.

I take my hat off to these athletes knowing that in addition to the stress of the corporate jungle, they’re dealing with the stress of knowing that in the next couple of months, there are big races to conquer. There’s no turning back now.

It gives me *goosies* just thinking about it!