Yesterday I headed down to RunOn! in Mckinney to get fitted for a pair of running shoes. My injured leg refuses to heal completely, probably in part because I have completely worn out my running shoes. It was an interesting experience.
I walked through the door in my jeans and T-shirt and both of the teens working behind the counter completely ignored me as I stood at the counter waiting for assistance. I guess I don't look like the running type. I am older and a little overweight instead of skinny, tan, young, and buff. An older guy finally offered to help me. He examined my current shoes to see where the wear and tear was on them, then had me walk around the store to study my gait. The longer we talked, the more excited he became. A serious runner, he was excited by my story of finding myself on the pavement.
I have been to try on shoes alone, and spent hours trying to find the perfect pair. The experience usually leaves me frustrated and dissatisfied. In contrast, he had me in three great options within 5 minutes. The difference in my shopping and his is that he is an expert at running gear. Knowing and listening to an expert can take you to new levels in life much faster than you could get there alone.
The most interesting thing about the visit? He spotted my cotton socks and said, "That's a huge part of your problem right there." Cotton socks tend to scootch around and bunch up under your feet as you run, creating chafing and blisters on long runs. I knew this from painful personal experience, but I had not realized there was an easy solution. I was so excited to find out that there are form fitted socks made for runners. They snugly hug your foot and don't bunch and they allow airflow through to your foot rather than absorbing all the sweat and chafing.
So where am I going with this? Of course it's more than a story about buying socks and shoes. I realized that finding experts with experience and listening to them can lead to much greater success in life. There are many times in life that we are in pain that we try to muddle through alone, when the fix is as simple as a new pair of socks. It made me stop and think about how much I try to get through life on my own. Generally speaking, I don't like to bother other people with my problems. Mostly because I like to appear as though I am very "with it" and "together." Pride.
Today I am thinking that maybe I should listen more and seek wisdom from others more often and not try to do this life thing alone.