The mind that yearns for the days when life was a simple us against them world. You win or you lose. Munster are Heineken Champions. I won a client over a competitor after a tense few days of pitching. Ireland won best country in Europe to do business in.
Simple really. One crowd of temporarily happy people. One or more crowds of unhappy and disheartened people. One wins, the others lose. Temporarily happy because in all of the examples above that feeling doesn't last. Munster lost the next Heineken Cup, I lost a client to a competitor soon after and in an article in Forbes in December 2015 Ireland had slipped to 4th behind Denmark, New Zealand and Norway!
So in the end everybody loses and all wins are temporary.
Give yourself some time to think about that! Nearly everyone who competes will lose more often than win.
What if we decided to stop competing? To just do what we do out of the sheer love of doing it and for the betterment of the world we live in. Everything we do, we either do for our own pleasure or to make other people's lives better.
Just think about that for a brief moment until the ego kicks back in.
I started thinking about that when attending Marathon Club Ireland (MCI) races. MCI run Marathon distance races all over Ireland for its 350 or so members and anyone else who wants to come along. We meet in car parks, school halls, road sides, forests or post offices. :)
We give each other cheers, high fives and hugs and run a Marathon at our own speeds. When finished we give each other more hugs and cheers and have tea, soup, biscuits, cake and the odd nip of Tullamore Dew together and go back home.
These races are Full Marathon distance races, 26.2 miles. And nobody individual wins. There is no prize for first, second or third. You are given your time and nearly nobody will even ask you for it. It is just for you. We do it out of love. And for quite a few also to get to 100 Marathons in their lifetime.
We have a wheelchair assisted running team in the group, Team Kerr. We take turns to assist the team to make the distance each time. We are helping to promote inclusion at other running events so more people of all abilities can experience the joy and benefits of running.
No competition and yet everyone is happy most of the time. I am wondering if we could bring more of that to other aspects in life.
And that is why, gradually, I'm losing interest in competition. Because happiness is more important to me than winning!
Personally I ran Marathon number 36 this weekend in Killeigh, County Offaly. It was an MCI event. So it had all the above mentioned goodness. I stayed with Brenda and Shane from the Club the night before and received a wonderful welcome from them, thanks most sincerely to both!!
On Saturday morning at 8am we gathered outside the school hall in Killeigh for the race briefing and off we went in what was persistent and sometimes heavy rain for the whole duration, on an interesting country course that is best described as undulating with one or two smaller hills.
I ran the first 2 laps with Catherine, laps 3 & 4 on my own and laps 5 & 6 with Paula. I really enjoyed the chats either end and the mindfulness of the solitary 2 laps equally. Paula and myself agreed to run the Directors Race in Tralee together on March 11th. We have similar pace and she is great company.
At the end of lap 5 with Paula having a great run. (Thanks Mary Mockett for picture)
When we finished we got a race medal (everyone gets the same one), homemade soup, tea, sandwiches and biscuits and loads of hugs. We chatted for a while and each went their way. Until the next Marathon. Which for most is next week or the week after. Out of pure love. With no competition but our own.
Running for the love of it without competition yet with a big smile. (Thanks Mary Mockett for picture)
What if nobody competed anymore? The ego is getting a battering here.
What if nobody competed anymore?
I'm thinking about it. Are you?
Miles with smiles, Patte xxx