“Don’t make it the whole meal or you’ll be sick”
– George Leonard
Yesterday while I dutifully wandered about the blogosphere, I found this very awesome blog written by this very funny person called Chrissy.
Her post #73 caught my eyes because it is about a topic which I find quite sensible: competition…
(I just realized that you will be very much “back-pinged” or spammed by this post, Chrissy, if you read this… sorry!)
1. Breaking bones to break the chrono
Not the proper and good for everybody competition with yourself, but the straight-forward versus someone else competition, as a mean to improve yourself.
And I thought: “Hey, that’s funny. I had a whole discussion with myself some time ago about that exact same topic.”
I am not a natural competitor. Okay, I enjoy playing games and it may happen that I get a bit emotional… And who does not like to win? I swear: it’s not because I am (not) an elegant winner that I enjoy the competition. Not always.
Okay, I am a quite bad looser too. Oh please, do you always loose gracefully?
However non competitive I am, I did prepare for my first 10 km – and for almost all the races that came afterwards. Not for the competition, but for the fun of finishing the run. I am not a long distance runner. Or I was not. Actually, until just a few months ago, I was not even a runner at all.
But since I’ve decided to be fit and healthy and sexier than ever in my thirties, the least I can do is to get fit and healthy and sexy. Running is part of the process. Also, I want to die very very late to creep as long as possible all of my future children. Hehe. Plus I just can’t bear the thought of Babylove alone on this planet as it is now.
Not to forget that jogging is a very good way to get some time for myself. I mean away from the boys. Or, if I bring one or the other along, I do not need to answer as I am out of breath. Hence I do not need to listen. Bam! That’s awesome.
Thus, although I do not like it every time before, I enjoy running while running. Am I clear? And surely love it once back at home, relaxed and satisfied with myself. Almost as good as sex.
This is where competition comes in: a good way to fuel one’s motivation is to participate in “races”. I realized that it works with many people, and so does it with me. Because as much as I want to be fit and healthy and sexy, and as much as I like to feel the endorphin increase in me, this is just not enough.
Having a chip on my shoe tracking my performance and shaming me if I fail to go to the finish line, that really matters. Beyond that: I do run faster, my feet are lighter, I have more endurance during races. All these people around me, not quitting, being quicker, having a better coordination, that emulates me. A lot lot lot. Being the last to cross the finish line is still crossing a finish line. That is awesome too. Once I have been last – we were four ladies to run a 4.6 km in a small town. I got lost talking to the children running the 2 km. Dear, that was awkward and fun. I still managed to arrive before the Nordic Walkers though.
There may be as much nobility in being last as in being first, because the two positions are equally necessary in the world, the one to complement the other.
– Jose Ortega y Gasset
2. “It’s not about winning”, lied every parent at least once
There are only a few values I want to share with Babylove: smile, be polite, help others, follow some rules, open the doors to women even if they are feminist, carry the shopping bags of the elderly and your mother, share love around, sing in the shower, avoid violence, try weed if you really really have to but please don’t do guns, clean the toilet seat if you leave it down while peeing.
And then there is competition. Or not. (Don’t start me on how to handle money, because I did not quite sort it out for myself yet).
In Germany we have a lot of those Montessori schools I used to call hippie schools. The more I read about and learn about, and the more I am convinced that this is where I want to bring BL. Especially since I dived into psychology, and dug into Piaget’s work I believe in a non always competition-focused education, where children learn to cooperate and improve altogether. Where they learn that “alone you go faster, together we go further” and they build a world and break walls. Instead of building walls and breaking the world.
Probably it all go down to what my grand-mother used to tell me: “Use it, don’t abuse it” and as well: “Blanc sur rouge, rien ne bouge. Rouge sur blanc, tout fout le camp!”*
I try to always remember her precious words. Do you follow your elder’s advice too?