Picture this; I’m at home, about to open the door and start jogging a lap in the forest that will take me about 45 minutes, and at that moment I realize that I have to pee. Just a little. But nonetheless, I have to pee. I’m great when it comes to decisions. I don’t hesitate much. I go with my gut feeling. This time it meant that I was going to wait to go to the bathroom.
I wanted to see if I could jog for 45 minutes without peeing my pants.
It took me no more than 2 minutes until I realized that this was not one of the best decision I have made. I was already inside the forest, the place where I go to get inspiration, when I felt that I had to run further in, away from people could see me and do what was necessary.
But I didn’t.
While jogging, I was listening to BlogCastFM and Srini interviewing Dino Dogan about building a community in your niche, why we should completely eliminate self-interest and blogging without goals or an outcome in mind. I really enjoy listening to the podcasts while jogging, and today was no exception.
But, I was still concerned about what was happening in my pants. Or, I should probably say, what was almost happening.
I had been running for 15 minutes before I met someone. It was a man, and he was about sixty years old. The only thought in my head was, can he see what’s (almost) happening?
He was looking in another direction. So was I.
I continued running and listening to Dino talk. The interview was brilliant, and wow, Dino is a fast talker, and he’s been one of the most interesting people I’ve listened to in a very long time. Now, almost half way through, I started to think about why almost peeing my pants can be helpful. Is there anything to learn from this experience?
What I discovered is that when I set my mind to accomplish something, I always accomplish it. I was going to finish the 45 minutes without peeing my pants, and without stopping somewhere inside the forest. I knew that I was going to make it. I just did. I’m not saying that it was comfortable, because it wasn’t, but I was going to make it.
The experience took my mind on a journey, back to where I used to live with my parents, almost twenty years ago, when I was playing a game called Civilization. It was a role playing game, and it was my favorite game. My mind was set at ruling the world, and I usually played for hours, and I almost never slept. I kept playing while other people were sleeping. When it was time to eat breakfast, I kept on playing. I didn’t have time to eat or sleep. I didn’t have time to go to the bathroom either. I didn’t have time for anything other than playing.
I’m not saying that almost peeing my pants while jogging is anything like playing civilization. What I’m saying is that we can do almost anything as long as we decide that we are going to do it. I thought about this for almost 10 minutes, and I had only five minutes left, until I was going to reach the house and the most important room inside. But then another thought appeared to me, from what seemed to be out of nowhere.
Thinking about food
I was still listening to Dino talking about why we should completely eliminate self-interest, and I combined it with thinking about what happens when we change our mindset. I thought about two very interesting things I’ve experienced lately when it comes to food. I’m not sure why almost every marketing experience I have is related to food, but it’s probably just a phase (or maybe not).
I ordered a pizza (yes, I know, another pizza story) a few weeks ago. When it was suppose to be ready, the waiter told me that it was ruined. He had forgot to take it out of the pizza oven. He told me that he was very sorry, and that if I could wait for 7 minutes, I would get the pizza for free, and that I would get coffee or coca-cola for free while waiting. I said that I would wait. I recieved the pizza, and it tasted awesome, and it was completely free. The waiter had turned a sad face into a happy one. Now, I tell all my friends about free pizza and the awesome experience.
Another time, another restaurant, but I still ordered pizza (surprise). Just after we got our food, my daughter spilled her Fanta. Everything. She started crying. The waiter helped us clean the table and the floor, but we had to pay for another Fanta. I’m not saying that my daughter should have received a free Fanta. But look at the two stories, do you see the differences? I continue to tell people about the first one, and the only reason I remember the one about the spilled Fanta, is because I’m still jogging and almost peeing my pants.
When I do things I love, I don’t think about eating, sleeping and peeing. The only thing on my mind is the one thing I’m passionate about, the one thing I’m doing at that moment. That’s what happened when I was playing Civilization.
That’s not what’s happening while jogging. My mind drifts, to places I haven’t been in a while.
I thought about this for the last five minutes, until I reached the house and did what was on my mind for the past 45 minutes. I’m not going to explain how it felt. But it was awesome.
While showering, I was thinking about the effect. I’m actually not sure, but I believe that not thinking about almost peeing my pants is a good thing, and that it means that I’m passionate about what I’m doing. And that we should all be looking to do activities where we forget about time and space, and all the necessary things we do every day. When we forget, that’s when we’re doing things we’re really passionate about.
We need to forget more often …