Today I was talking with a friend I really admire, who is having a tough time. Besides all of the things happening in the world to us all, she is also being treated for a life threatening illness while working at C-Suite level. She is also a loving mother with kids.
I am worried about her. Not because I think she can't handle it (she has trained for decades as a corporate athlete, and can run a double marathon, even with a life threatening illness) - but because other things are currently more important. Her health needs her energy. Her body physically needs more rest. Her mind deserves extra space to process.
We chatted about how hard it can be to make and then live different choices. We think we can't make different choices without losing something we currently have. So most of the time we "shoe horn" in the extra stuff. We juggle, rearrange, get some additional help, throw money at it (pray it works) and pull together a new "tweaked" marathon race strategy. Most of the time this works. We become masters at tweaking while we are still running.
Sometimes though tweaking just doesn't work. In these situations, we need to recognise our auto pilot response and turn it off. Rethink and redesign. Make different choices. Set and keep boundaries. Consider the bigger implications. What's really important here and now.
There is no winner when the marathon is not the real race.