Last week, I had multiple deadlines and a slew of interviews to conduct in a limited amount of time, and it seemed as though I literally didn’t have a spare minute between each item on my to-do list.
Naturally, when I finally got a day off on Saturday, I woke up at 5 a.m. in order to spend the day standing around on a patch of manmade snow, holding a clipboard and watching this year’s crop of Outdoor Emergency Care (OEC, or ski-patrol medical training) students for Whitetail and Liberty’s joint class assess and treat practice patients during their final exam. And I can tell you with complete honesty that there’s nowhere I would have rather been.
I was among a couple dozen ski patrollers to show up to the first 2012 OEC class last April with the goal of becoming an instructor. I figured it would be impossible to achieve this year, given my constant back-and-forth between D.C. and Virginia Beach, and given the various family emergencies drawing me to Florida and Colorado. But after I went to a few classes, I found that despite my geographical challenges, and despite the fact that the classes ate up each one of my Friday nights over the summer, and despite the fact that I probably should have been laying low and healing rather than taking on new challenges, getting involved with those classes simply made my heart happy. So I kept going, and nine months later, I was among six Whitetail patrollers to become full instructors.
It can be tough to sync your heart and your daily schedule. Too often, we train for races we no longer care about because we don’t want to lose our registration fee; spend time with people who no longer nourish our souls out of guilt or a sense of obligation; and try to conform our lives, careers, diets and free time to meet societal expectations that actually never made sense for us. The only way I know to do better is to pay attention to what makes my heart happy, and to try to do more of those things, hoping that the rest of my life and schedule will follow suit. Sometimes, as in the case of the OEC class, that actually works out.
What’s motivating you this week?