Thursday, April 18, 2013


There is a poem about a woman who finds a poor half frozen snake. She takes it home, gives it milk and honey and wraps it in silk to get it warm. After the snake is warmed up it bites the woman and kills her. Just before she dies she asks the snake, "Why did you bite me, I cared for you". The snake replied, "You knew I was a snake when you brought me in". That poem is a wonderful lesson about the temptations we face in our lives.

Many things we know are bad for us, make us feel so good. Drugs, alcohol, cheating on our significant other all give us a feel good. Even though deep down we know it's destroying us. We crave those feelings. We drink to access because we crave that drunk feeling, knowing that the next day we will pay with a hangover for those feelings. I was a smoker for 35 years and the last 5 years or so I would tell my self this cigarette will be my last, because I knew that I was poisoning myself. But I couldn't stop. That few minutes of need over came my good sense.

That feeling of new and forbidden love is so wonderful like a drug in it's self. But that feeling doesn't last, the freshness and intensity fades over time and then you wonder where the excitement is that you felt for this other person.  Then you usually discover that you destroyed a good relationship by giving in to the temptation of cheating.

We follow a cause or join a group, just to have a sense of belonging. Even though we often know that group is just using us. We like knowing we are part of it. Like a politician who tells you, "if you will just vote for me, all your troubles are over". That politician doesn't give a darn about you, just your vote and you know that but you want that feeling that comes from thinking that maybe this time will be different.

We all have the same temptations and face the same demons. It's how we respond to those temptations that makes us the person we are. I was talking to one of the guys in the gym this morning who had just completed his first triathlon. Was he on a High? Hell yes he was, he was riding the drug of accomplishment. He said this morning that he was as excited as when he was back in college and had just won a big game.

We can get our highs and our 'feel goods' and we can get them the right way, without feeling guilty. We can have the satisfaction of doing something well, accomplishing a difficult task or helping others accomplish their goals. The possibilities are endless, we just have to look for them.  Our challenge is to look for 'feel goods', that keep us moving forward and not sending us into a spin of self destruction.

My crowd has discovered the awesome feeling of finishing distance events like half and full marathons. Whether you walk, run or a combination, that finish line is sweet. But even sweeter is over coming negative temptations and winning your own self respect.

Thanks for reading.


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