How about focusing on yourself for a change
Before I started my Sunday run last night, I was content with finishing my 4 miles in 28 minutes. A 7 minute a mile pace is pretty good for running 4 miles because you work up a nice sweat, yet you’re not sprinting. I put my shoes on and in less than 5 minutes I was out of the door to beat the sunset. Now what happens next is not foreign and happens quite a bit to me, I’m working on this now. I started my run and was about a mile into it when a guy runs past me. In some crazy way, him passing me translated into him disrespecting me in my mind. Because the first step to getting over a bad habit is admitting it, I must admit that I am a pretty competitive person to a fault. As the runner passed me, my pace automatically picked up and I was suddenly on his heels. I followed this random strange runner mocking his pace making sure that my feet were hitting the ground at the same time as his for about 2 miles. His pace was much faster than my pace and my lungs were screaming, but I wasn’t going to quit and he is going to learn to never pass me again. At the end of mile 2, his pace started to slow up and I was about to make my move and pass him to show him who’s boss. To my dismay, the runner stops and starts to stretch. What?!?! This was mile 3 for me and I hadn’t realized that I had 1 more mile to go. I had an entire mile to go and my body was aching and crying for me to stop. At any point now I knew my knees would buckle and the t-shirt with “If I pass out call this number” idea that my dad gave me suddenly seemed like a brilliant idea. After I passed the runner and without my permission, my body down shifted to a crawl like jog. As I finally made it to the end of my 4 mile run, it had been 30 minutes, I was drenched with sweat, and I felt like I needed to throw up. Does this story sound familiar to you?
Maybe your story isn’t exactly like mine, but have you ever wanted what someone else had or wanted to be just like someone else? Staying focused is especially hard to do when you are comparing and competing with other people. Just like my situation where I was competing with the runner, you never know what happens when you are not watching. I didn’t know where the runner started, he could have only ran 2 miles and instead of me being focused on my goal, I was distracted and lost sight of the goals that I set for myself. In life we want the life of other people, we want their cars, their jobs, their shoes, their bags, their money and in reality we have no idea what the story behind their lives. God doesn’t want us to covet our neighbor but in turn wants us to delight ourselves in Him. Trying to be like others will burn you out, the same way I barely finished my run before the sun went down because I was focusing on someone else. The Bible tells us in Romans 12:2 not to conform to this world but instead to renew our minds. Let’s challenge ourselves to only compete with ourselves and push ourselves to do what God wants us to do and not what others push us to do.