One important component to the 40for40 quest is setting my factory in order for the next forty years of production. The ultimate goal is to prepare for the celebration by choosing changes that improve life for me and those around me.
For me, a long term goal really allows me to notice the small improvements that bring me closer to the objective. Without a goal as a measuring stick, we just don't have a continuous loop of positive feedback. And without a sign of progress, we miss an opportunity for gratitude.
This week I made an appointment with Kevin Linde, the physical therapist who helped me recover from my knee surgery in March 2009. I went to Kevin for two reasons. First, I don't want to move forward with my endurance training unless my knee and my other parts are properly functioning for the task at hand. And secondly, I want to see how I have improved. I am grateful that I made the appointment.
Kevin is really talented at noticing minor imbalances in the body. In my case he showed me that the patella in my once injured knee was not tracking as it should. A lack of development in my medial muscles was allowing the knee to move ever so slightly up and away from its normal alignment during each running stroke. Now thanks to Kevin, I am armed with some great exercises and a plan to strengthen my knee for the upcoming training. In this case, merely identifying a flaw has given me new inspiration for gratitude.
As our annual reminder of thanksgiving settles upon us, we should look within us and around us for improvement opportunities. An opportunity to improve is a futures option on Gratitude.