All posts by theconradlippert

Moving On

Why is it so hard to move on? Deep down there comes a point when you know something that was a vital part of your life has run it’s course but you can’t bring yourself to let it go. You can’t bring yourself to step out into the unknown – it’s too scary.

For me, that was competitive running. I just recently ran my last NCAA cross-country race ever. The end was bittersweet, but the newfound freedom it has granted me has been exhilarating.

Running and racing has been the focal point of my life for so long. It has brought me so much passion, joy, and intense moments of aliveness. But earlier this year the fire inside me was gone. Maybe not completely, but it didn’t burn as bright.

There were still times I wanted to hit and accolades I wanted to achieve. I thought these achievements would make me feel validated or proven. But my self-worth is not predicated on such merits. Those numbers or awards do not define who I am. The more I can disidentify with those times and achievements, the more I can get to know my true self – wherein my true happiness and self-worth lies.

But I was scared to let go. I was holding onto that identity of being a runner, a D1 athlete, a teammate. It was safe and comfortable to be doing what I’d been doing for so much of my life. I used running as a way to rationalize all I did. What I ate, my sleep habits, how much I drank, etc. Everything was centered on improving myself as a runner and it was hard to let that go.

But now that I’m done, I’ve found other reasons for why I do things in my life. And there are other things I do for no reason – just because I want to. And that’s reason enough.

I still run everyday and I love it. But I run with a new meaning and purpose and it brings me joy in a new way. It doesn’t consume all my energies and thoughts anymore. This has allowed me to see other paths available and find new passions to pursue. These passions make me feel alive in a different way, yet equally as satisfying.

Do I regret not quitting? No. I ensured that I got the most out of my running as I could. But it was the safe choice. I’m not going to search for the next point in my life when it’s time to move on from something, but when it comes I’m going to be aware and accepting of it. And next time, I’m going to take the risk – trust myself and allow the doors to the endless new adventures out there to open. Then the question becomes: will I go on them?

Thanks for Listening

Thanks for Listening

This may be hypocritical – but I don’t like talking about myself. Everyone has their own shit to deal with. Their own problems, struggles, and needs. Why should I feel that they want, or should, listen to my problems? Expecting someone to listen to my grievances feels selfish.

By asking for someone to listen to me it makes me feel like I think the pain or scars I’m dealing with are more worthy of attention than theirs. Everyone’s struggles and successes are relative. You only see the world through your own eyes. Why should someone ever be asked to listen to my story while they are writing their own?

This blog intends to create new eyes to see the world through and share these new viewpoints with whoever dares to change lenses. The pieces I write are almost always personal, but they are usually not about me.

Sometimes though, I need to come back to my own story and express pains specific to me. Tell how I found my path. Share my moments of joy.

Some of my greatest learning moments have come from someone sharing their story with me – their TRUE story. This openness is what allows us to gain an understanding of the fears or insecurities that drive many of one’s actions, choices, and behaviors. This gives us the ability to form new perspectives of people and the world. To understand each other better and be more compassionate.

By sharing my story, I hope that there are people out there who can learn from the difficulties I’ve faced on my journey. Maybe you can see some of the same fears hiding behind your choices. Or recognize the same insecurities driving your actions. If I can paint my picture more clearly, than maybe you will realize our pictures aren’t so different after all.

The recognition of these fears is what is so freeing in the end. The awareness of how these insecurities are controlling my life is what enables me to let them go. I’m then able to allow joy, love, and compassion drive what I do. To focus on what I am passionate about. If I can expose how I let other people’s expectations of me run my life, maybe you will see that you can live your life for yourself too.

But more than anything, these personal posts are for me. The power of having a listener is often overlooked. Sometimes I just need to let go of my feelings – release the energies I’ve been holding onto. Just knowing I’m being heard in these moments is invaluable. So Thank YOU for listening to my story. You are helping whether you know it or not. I just hope I’m able to offer you something as well.