This morning I was reminded how important step one is.
I started running again. It’s been a few years since this was my daily obsession, but I have been determined to re-start. I was doing pretty well all summer, until my time and energy got consumed by a recent move. Today wasn’t my first run in the new neighborhood. I’ve been out there a few mornings in the past couple weeks. But it was the first one this week – the first one in several days due to an overflowing September schedule. It also was my first Monday morning run from the new house – which is significant because Sundays tend to tire out this preacher.
I’ve finally figured out what the new running route will be. It took a few attempts because this new neighborhood is (an understatement) hilly. No matter which way I go, there either will be an immediate incline or a slow and steady rise. I’ve settled on the immediate incline that I walk up as my warm-up. Of course most running mornings, I’ve already been up the hill and back once on a walk with my little dog, as was the case this morning. When I went back out without him, I got to the top of the immediate incline and found myself not quite ready to start. Agh. It was mind over matter. I had to force my right foot to take the first stride, then left, then right, then left, literally willing myself on for quite some time. I could feel the weariness everywhere. And I noticed for the first time on this route that the immediate incline turns into a slow and steady ascent all the way to the end of the street. Agh. Agh!
Step one. For lots of reasons this morning, it was particularly difficult. As was step two and three that followed – a reminder that sometimes it just is.
I reflected upon a poem recently that was called Start Close In (by David Whyte). The wisdom it imparted was to just begin. There is no need to fret first over step two and three and fifty-six if we never take step one.
How often is life like that?
What step one do I need to take . . . not on a running route but in my work? In my relationships? In chasing my dreams?
What ones do you?
Only begin. Even if it takes mind over matter, even if you don’t know where the road will lead, even if you worry that way won’t unfold beneath your feet. (BTW: it will!)
Take your first step. The adventure of your lifetime will not begin without it!
Step one. Only begin.
@ Copyright JMN – 2015 (All rights reserved.)