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Breaking the Chains that Bind

IFHave you ever found yourself saying “I have to……I must….I really ought to…..I always….?”

I know I have. You might be wondering why I’m asking you this? Those of you who know me personally will be aware that I love running. I run over hill, over dale and over half marathons… I run for my health, fun and longevity. I’m also an extremely competitive person towards others as well as myself.

Well last Sunday I ran the Brighton Half which I do each year. Every race to date I’ve set myself the target of running slightly faster than my last time. For the runners amongst you my Personal Best is 2.05 hours. Otherwise it won’t mean much!

The point is that the run up to this race was a difficult one with commitments meaning ‘early morning starts’ and ‘late homes.’ I’m sure you’re all familiar with this theme……These commitments create significant gaps in my Training Diary. Training preparation suffered and in my heart I knew that I wasn’t going to perform at my best. So what’s New Permissions got to do with running you may be thinking? This is the thing.

With my fitness levels being only half of what experience told me I really needed to compete with my previous Brighton time, I had a decision to make. To run and not return a respectable time in my diary – or not to run at all.

A few self discussions later I decided to run and give myself a New Permission. That New Permission was to break a hitherto rule to run my hardest against the clock. This time I’d run for enjoyment, curiosity and because I could. I could hear myself saying “Crikey that’ll be a first……!” No “If only I’ds” for me in my old age…….

A sunny, crisp and vibrant Sunday morning came.The atmosphere as always electric, noisy and hugely expectant. Crowds thronged the sea front cheering on loved ones, friends and competitors.

So I ran., I enjoyed. I was slower and I broke a rule. Wahey!

So what – who made that rule anyway?

In giving ourselves New Permissions we break the chains we’ve forged for ourselves. When we do so, we take the pressure off, release anxiety and open our  minds to so many other alternative choices.

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