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Monday, April 13, 2015

Twenty Nine

It's been an interesting couple months.

Work has been very busy, both with the cycling stuff and some consulting that I've picked up on the side. Some long work days plus wrestling some personal demons have made for a mental roller coaster of sorts.  I've come to understand that this'll be a recurring theme of adulthood.  Roller coasters, dealing with shit, and more importantly not knowing if every decision you made is the right decision...

I turned 29 a week ago  As my twenties come to a close, naturally someone as cripplingly introspective as myself starts to evaluate where I sit in this massive picture.

I'm sure there's a similar post  for 28, 27, 26, 25, 24 and 23 when I started this blog.

 I've realized that for too long I've measured my successes against the arbitrary benchmarks that exist out there. One thing I always joke about is that "I'm running out of time to be in Time Magazine's Top 30 under 30".  It is a joke, but I'd be lying if I said there wasn't a bit of truth and desire in it.

When you're a five year old and someone asks you what you want to be when you grow up, the list of answers is infinite. At five you're a burgeoning ball of unfounded potential.  Making the claim that you'll be an astronaut, a gold medal winner at the Olympics, or a race car driver are all fair. Who's going to say no?

At 29 it's not quite so simple.  I'd like to be an astronaut, but pragmatically speaking it isn't a likely outcome. I can't win gold at the Olympics for any of the sports I participate in simply because in elite sporting terms, I'm out to pasture.. Lastly, I accidentally dropped my detailed, accurate plans on how to create a cold fusion reactor down the toilet, so there goes my top 30 under 30.

Conservatism takes over as you get older. You place your bets on the conservative options, and words such as 'realistic' and 'pragmatic' enter your vocabulary. Dreaming about some grandiose life doesn't come as easy. The inability to achieve the things above doesn't bother me so much as the loss of the ability to dream them..if that makes any sense at all.

Of course you see the common theme here. My definition of success is intrinsically connected to the perspective of others. The three things I listed above are all accolades. Nowhere does it say that they are metrics of happiness.

I had a great, long overdue conversation with a friend this past weekend which brought up this point. It sat with me and made for some insomnia as my mind worked at a million gigahertz, processing this notion into a context that worked for me.

This year will have to be about figuring out what makes me truly happy from the inside..not based on metrics from the outside.It'll take undoing some ingrained habits.. and maybe some fresh new reading outside of my usual goal oriented, productivity stuff... but it should lead to a greater good.

......

On the plus side, the weather is on the plus side.  So I've been riding a lot.. and I realize when I'm riding, I don't fret about life stuff nearly as much, so I'll probably keep doing that.






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