Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Your talent has far reaching effects

Meryl Streep may not know this, but the application of her talent in acting impacted me deeply in my relationship with my mom, after watching her stellar performance in the Oscar-winning movie, The Iron Lady, in a particularly moving scene where she longed for her son's visit and was painfully concealing her disappointment over the phone when he called to inform of his inability to visit.

As I watched, I felt the character's pain, so brilliantly brought forth by Meryl Streep, and finally understood my own mother's pain whenever she texted me asking when would I be visiting her and I'd procrastinate doing so because I was tired, busy or had seemingly more pressing matters at hand.

But seriously, what can be more important than the very one who gave me all she had, who made sure I had every chance of a proper shot in life, who endured daily sacrifices so my life would be better lived? I owe her this much - that I should honour her more than my own selfish intellect should have a say and demand its time and hold over me.

It takes an outsider, a stranger, for that matter of fact, to bring across such a pertinent point to me - that parents long for their children, more so in their old age, and it is our utmost responsibility and duty, to give of our time, money and resources to them who withheld nothing from us.

Lesson: Don't squander your talent, and don't underestimate your impact to others. Meryl Streep may not know what her talent did for me, but I'm thankful that she did what she does best, and in doing so, touched millions; my life, and my mother's, included.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

So I will rise again

"Like a phoenix rising out of the ashes, so will I rise again..."

It's been liberating the past few months, taking a step back from a single-minded, one-track pursuit of a dream I hold so dear - to compete in the IronMan, and unleash my love for endurance sports.

While it is liberating on one hand, it has been emotionally draining on the other, as I tried to fill my life with things apart from swim, bike, run; and fail miserably at doing so. 

You see, despite my extroverted personality, I keep certain mundane routines, like eating the same food for months on end, listening to the same song over and over again, and running the same route every day for the past 3 years. 

So the truth be told, despite my withdrawal from IM Melbourne, despite my self declaration to re-evalute my motive for competing in IM, I continue to keep a humdrum routine of training, work and family, day in and day out. Social activities usually take a back seat. Like an addict, I can't function effectively without a daily dose of training, and keep to a strict routine of turning in to bed before 11pm in order to wake up at 3 or 4am to begin training, before heading to work.

And so I continue training and pushing myself to break my own limits every single day. 

Only difference is, I train now with a heightened conscience of my motive, and checking that what I do aligns with my purpose.

Every time I feel like I'm side tracking from my purpose in my sporting pursuit, I revisit my inspiration for triathlons. I don't claim to be anywhere near her standing and accomplishments, but I share her heartbeat for the sport and her clarity of her mission through the sport.

"When I first turned professional 4 ½ years ago I said to my then coach “Brett, I feel so selfish, everything I do in this sport is for me and me alone”. His response “Just you wait Chrissie, within a couple of years, through your achievements, you will be able to affect more change than you ever thought possible”. His prophecy has come true. I have said it before, and I will say it again, sport has phenomenal, far-reaching amazing power. It is a vehicle to do great things." 

-an excerpt from Chrissie's blog:

And so this is my driving force, my guiding light: I have been blessed with amazing resources at my disposal - a healthy body, a strong heart, a quick mind, a disciplined will, and a relentless spirit - I have a responsibility of putting myself and these resources to good use in my area of passion and commitment, and believe that when I do, I am living out my purpose, which has far-reaching effects.