What I learned from the Ironman that changed my life

The Ironman triathlon consists of a 2.4-mile swim, a 112-mile bike ride ending with a 26.2-mile marathon run. What went on from the very instant I decided to attempt it to finally finishing the race taught me more than I could have ever learned from a college degree of study.

“It was like anything that has ever been worthwhile in my life; it was hard, painful and memorable.” Michael Lantz

It was like anything that has ever been worthwhile in my life; it was hard, painful and memorable. I learned a great deal about the conflict of my body hurting and wanting to stop and my mind playing tricks on me, tempting me to quit.

If I had to sum up the top three things I learned about myself it would include these.

Commitment

I learned that my level of commitment is equal to the importance I place on my goals and dreams. When I decided to do my first Ironman on April 15, 2007, I was all in. I was not going to let anything get in the way of crossing that finish line. 

The hardest thing to trust

I often wondered when I saw certain people who seemed to have what I wanted say that they just gave all that they could and was blessed with their abundance.

What? They gave all that they could and then they received?

“What principle is this?” I asked.

I thought it was about me “getting” my abundance. I couldn’t imagine just giving and giving. I thought once I gave it away it was gone forever. After all, men are just in life for them self.

Then something changed for me. I learned that this principle might be true.

Then I had that moment of test, “I’m on the edge of the cliff and if I want to fly, I have to jump off.”

I had to trust in something I couldn’t see. I’ve learned it’s called faith.

I grew up with the attitude that I couldn’t really trust anyone. Now, at the edge of the cliff, I had to bury that belief and jump.

Thankfully, I didn’t die after I jumped. I was scared though. I still am.

Have I successfully executed my test? Have I received more than I’ve given like people have shared had happened to them?

Yes, I have. I have been rewarded with self worth. I have been rewarded with the belief that I’m worthy of being the person who can be trusted. I’m equal in every way with all men and that abundance can be mine.

Imagine that? It’s all about trust. I learned that the reason I couldn’t trust this principle or trust others is because I didn’t trust myself.

Today I do trust. I don’t trust man. I trust the Creator of all. The more I give, the more I receive. In that order is the only way to make it work. That is the test.

Will it be scary for you at the edge of that cliff?

Men are, that they might find joy!

img_0168“Life is filled with detours and dead ends, trials and challenges of every kind. Each of us has likely had times when distress, anguish, and despair almost consumed us. Yet we are here to have joy?” said Russell M. Nelson.

The answer is a resounding yes! Joy is a guiding force for all men. As you have joy are given more light to confirm your path is the right one and to keep following it.

I believe that we are all children of a Higher Power. There is evidence of this in that there are similarities in all human beings. We of course all have the same physical make ups; two eyes, two legs, a heart and lungs to name a few. We all have the same feelings of happiness, sadness, pleasure and pain. We all have to fuel ourselves and drink water to survive.

The most perfect gift that everyone has is the right to choose our existence and state of being through thought. And with this similarity we are the most different because we all

Is man basically evil or good?

FacebookpostWhen I was in junior high school I had a teacher that asked the class if we thought man was generally evil or good. There was  much discussion and then the teacher had the class vote. To my surprise I was the only student that thought man was basically good. Every other student thought that man was evil. The teacher even openly disagreed with me.

I was recently reminded of this and began to dwell on my answer. I still believe man is good.

I wonder what those other students and teacher’s life has been like. I wonder if they have gone through the last 45 years thinking the same thing. What is their view point on people? Would they distrust  all people if they thought man was basically evil? Maybe they felt they were evil and believed that because they were, everyone else must be?

I believe that we all were created by a good creator who loved us and wanted to give us life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. He gave us the ability to be free. To be able to make choices. If we were made in our creator’s image then we must be good because no creator that was evil would give us these wonderful attributes.

Don’t get me wrong, good people have evil thoughts. We all do. We all have to work toward being positive and good.

Because I believe all men are basically good I’m able to trust all people. I get along with everyone. I’ve really never met a person I didn’t like.

I’ve had people be mean to me and perhaps some might say they are evil. I think people are mean because they have certain needs and don’t really realize they are being mean.

You may disagree with me. I’m okay with that. I really don’t care what other’s think about others. I don’t really care what others think about me. I’m able to look in the mirror every morning and be pleased with the progress I’ve made to be a better human being and with that man is basically good.

I sure wish I could go back to class and argue with that teacher. I’d look him in the eye and say, “You may think all man is evil but I think you’re a great and good man!”

I don’t think he would have argued that statement.