I Have A Running Problem…Posted by: Elizabeth Jayne Liu on May 11th, 2012
Are you a runner? And not the kind on a treadmill.
I have a running problem. Not the kind of running problem that happens when you’ve been logging in 18 miles a day and develop shin splints, but then power through the pain even when a fragile little tear is forming at the inside corner of your eye as your feet pound pound pound the pavement because you’re a goddamn gladiator.
No, not that kind.
I run from problems.
Maybe you claim to be the type of person that doesn’t run from problems. In that case, let me be the first to point out that you may have a problem with lying.
People this advice will speak to: young people, old people, rich people, poor people, people with fake boobies, people with real boobies, people who appreciate Tupac, people with no taste in music, people who appreciate a smooth hit of crack, people who Just Say No, and honest people.
People this advice will not speak to: People with Denial Issues.
I’m not just talking about big problems (the kind that could land you in serious debt or at Heartbreak Hotel). Maybe you’re the type of person to walk away from a copier machine at Kinko’s after jamming it instead of asking a friendly copy expert to help you fix the machine. Not that I would do something so juvenile and dishonest. I should also add here that I’m no longer allowed inside the Kinko’s on Wilshire Boulevard in Beverly Hills. Make of that information what you will.
For a long time, I told myself that I wasn’t running, I was simply, “not wasting my time on bullshit.” Which was bullshit. Now, I ask myself this one question when I am about to walk away: When this moment becomes a memory, will I regret not sticking it out?
I then remind myself: No deposit, No return.
Well, it’s actually not quite so succinct or eloquent when it’s running through my head. It’s more like, “Are you going to man-up, girl? Are you going to see this thing through like a brave adult?”
When something becomes too tough or too complicated or too scary, I want to walk away and put it out of my mind. I don’t want to devote the precious time it takes to see it through because I hate being vulnerable, and I hate feeling like a loser. Misunderstanding with a friend? Just unfriend her on Facebook. Rough day with a partner? Erase all sweet reminders and drown my sorrows in cheap champagne. Writer’s block? Smash the computer with my bare fists and renew my vows to full-time thuggery (Is that even a word? Let’s pretend it is.).
I don’t want to be that person anymore. If I fall flat on my face, so be it. If I end up crying in a bar at 2:47 p.m. in a faraway city because something didn’t work out, so be it. I’m just going to keep on keepin’ on. Because some things are worth it. Because occasionally, when I practice being dedicated, motivated and patient, the payoff is immense. Mind-blowing, even.
I’m afraid. But I’m pushing through it.
How do you decide when to stick something out – a new hobby, job, relationship, friendship, relocation….?