Bloomsday

Bloomsday was a couple of weeks ago and it was an awesome run!  Great weather and great people!

After the race, I ran into a whole bunch of people who kept asking me the same question: “What was your time?”  The was literally the first question every single person asked me after seeing my Bloomsday shirt.  In my opinion, this question raises an equally valid question:  Why does it matter?

People would be super impressed if I told them that I ran Bloomsday in under 50 minutes.  They would probably make me feel pretty awesome about myself.  On the other hand, people would be pretty judgmental if I told them that I ran Bloomsday 2 hours.  They would probably make me feel pretty bad about myself.  But why do they care?  And why do I care?

Now let’s say that I was trying to hit a personal goal of Bloomsday in an hour.  If I ran it in 1 hour and 1 minute, I would feel like crap.  But 59 minutes?  I’m a total boss!  But why??

Here’s my point in all of this: People have a tendency to associate themselves with results instead of who they actually are.  The reason that 1 hour and 1 minute feels like crap is that I chose to associate myself with that label.  Somehow I subconsciously attached who I am with how fast I ran. Have you ever thought about how weird it is that we are able to think about ourselves?  That’s kind of a strange question, but I encourage you to explore it.  The part of myself that is able to observe me is literally able to choose whether or not I am associating who I am with that label.  Instead of saying to myself I’m a loser because I didn’t hit my goal, I can say to myself I had fun running Bloomsday because the weather was awesome and I had a fun time with friends.  Suddenly, the observing part of myself has detached the label from my worth.

This is going to sound weird, but when I think about these parts of myself, I think in terms of “I” and “me”.  “I” is the observer and “me” is the one who is experiencing the world.  If I was to hit my shin on a table it would hurt “me”.  “I”, however, is unchanged.  With this perspective, it is not the table that is causing my pain but rather the fact that I chose to associate “I” with “me”.  Similarly, “I” is unchanged when someone hurts my feelings.  I’m only hurting because I attached “I” with “me”.  Results may affect “me” but it is “I” who chooses whether or not this is attached to my self worth.  I hope that makes sense …

For the most part, I don’t think people understand that who they are is different than what they do.   If they did, they wouldn’t ask questions like “What was your time?”  If Bloomsday was run in a perfect world, I don’t think that anyone would time it.  I think that we’d all just run it and enjoy it for what it is!

Life and Matt

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2 thoughts on “Bloomsday

  1. This reminds me of a specific philosopher… Descartes 🙂

    Sorry, I teach philosophy.

    Glad you had fun running Bloomsday. Although, I hope you didn’t have as much fun as when we ran it together and you were – Banana suit man!

    Liked by 1 person

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