Thursday, March 13, 2014

What Matters?

It's been a while.  Life takes over our... well... life occasionally.  It sure has taken mine for the past 13 months.  Many things changed and some really didn't.  I've had my teenage son come live with me full time, but then he left; I led a HUGE product launch at work; I celebrated a 10 year anniversary; I tore a rotator cuff and had surgery; etc; gained some weight back; thought a family member was dying; reconnected with my father; started attending church again, and continued to raise an amazing set of daughters.

By the way, most of my readership will drop off once I say I also quit Crossfit.  After 3 years, it was too much for this 1 armed participant.  I tore my rotator cuff after 3 years of hard work and I simply can't experience that special kind of hell again.  I still work out "Crossfit style" but never again will I allow competitiveness enter my workouts.  It makes me do stupid things which are not worth the health risk.   Plus you probably won't like the sentimentality of what I will be writing about below.


All in all it was a helluva ride.  It was stressful, fun, disheartening, encouraging, but most of all it helped me grown as a person.  As I reflect back, my growth is what I value most in what was my third toughest year in life.  My toughest year was my divorce, my second was my parents divorce.  This was third... and I wouldn't trade it for the world.  I lived through some very trying times that made me a better husband, a better father, a better employee, a better son, and a better person.  I am kinder now.  I am more concerned about other people's situations and challenges.  I listen to people more and I talk less. I'm more tolerant of people (even though they probably don't deserve it).

I am shocked at how much a successful 44 year old man doesn't understand about life.  13 months ago I was focused on saving and selecting a new car, worrying about how to improve my home theater system, and trying to determine how I could get better at throwing a weighted ball against a wall.  After living through what I have, I realize how silly my focus was.

What matters?




Yeah, yeah, put it on a shirt and sell it.  I sound like a flipping greeting card.  But you know what?  The sooner you realize what matters, the sooner you become a happier person.

Guess what I realized about myself last month?  I am afraid of dying.  Not because I think a horrible fate awaits me (though it may).  I'm afraid of dying because I don't want to stop seeing the people I love everyday.  I don't want to stop calling my mom to say hello.  I don't want to stop smelling my wife's hair when I get in bed.  I don't want to stop tickling my daughter.  I don't want to stop saying good morning to my co-workers everyday.  I don't want to stop smiling at the restaurant cashier. I am not afraid of dying because I won't be able to drive a nice car to work tomorrow or because I won't have a chance to beat my last work out performance.

Cars don't matter.  Balls against walls don't matter.  They are a means.  None are an end.  I'm not saying, "don't drive a nice car".  I'm saying don't make it a center piece of what makes you happy.

Here are some wonderful blogs which can help you realize how to be happier.  I actually discovered both AFTER my realizations.  But it sure reinforces my ephiphanies.

Until next time.