I have written about running in the past, and my view is still the same. Running is an activity that helps me focus on the present. I have to pay attention to my surroundings to stay safe from oncoming traffic and crowded footpaths. I have to pay attention to the weather. I certainly need to pay attention to the road so that I don’t slip or trip on a broken branch. I tend to focus on the future or dwell on past events, so running helps break this pattern by bringing me into the present.
Being present, being in the present, has recently become quite difficult given the uncertainty in my life. While I’ve become accustomed to a new level of not knowing – I wouldn’t say I’m comfortable, or rather my tolerance levels have increased. I’m experiencing anxiety in a way that I haven’t experienced in the past. So finding activities that keep me grounded has become a priority in my life rather than an afterthought.
So I’m actually making time to do more of what keeps me mentally healthy and grounded. This month I’m challenging myself to stick to a running schedule. Two weeks in, so far so good. The semester hasn’t started so I’ve got time to establish some good habits. My aim is to keep this grounding a priority and not to let work get in the way. Staying grounded is longer a option but a need.