What Are You Chasing?

Dog sunny Day AfternoonFred Craddock tells the story…

A man walks into the living room of a friend’s house and sees a large greyhound dog wrestling on the floor with his friend’s children. His friend had a habit of rescuing the greyhounds from the race tracks because they make great pets.

The dog and children were having a great time rolling around and playing on the floor with each other. The man looked down at that greyhound dog and said, “Dog, how come you’re not racing anymore?” And the dog said, “I’m certainly young enough to race.” The man responded, “So you’re young enough to race. Is it because you weren’t winning anymore?” The dog said, “Oh no. I was winning every race. I won every race up until the day I stopped racing.”

“Well then why aren’t you racing anymore dog?”

The dog replied, “Because one day I realized, that rabbit I was chasing wasn’t real.”

I’m sitting in my front room, taking some personal time, checking out the recommendation of a friend – watching “The Big C“. I try to find shows I can share with my wife, our tastes are very different. It’s the story of a woman who finds out she has cancer, terminal cancer, but can’t seem to tell anyone except her crotchety old neighbour. She realizes that she has spent her life playing it safe, chasing after middle-class furniture and watered-down dreams. It is a reminder of how easy it is to forget what is important, to settle for what is predictable.

Tony Campolo likes to talk a about a study in which fifty people who were in their late nineties were asked the question: “If you could live your life over again, what would you do differently?” Looking back on their life they concluded that, if they had a chance to live their lives over again, they would have spent more time reflecting, taken more risks, and done more things that would live on after they died.

No one mentioned they would have attended more meetings, spent more time doing taxes or had more arguments about paint samples. Few of us, if pressed, would admit that we grew up hoping that some day we could waste our lives on things that didn’t matter.

4 thoughts on “What Are You Chasing?

  1. Nice reflection! I’ve recently graduated with BA, and now that I’ve almost recovered from all the things in the last months(depression, ptsd etc.), and now I’m trying to build a living on online store and freelancing. And even after I am actually making good effort and making money in it, I still have a friend that’s trying to convince me there are at least 101 reasons not to do it- self-owning a business is more stressful, work is more secure, if it doesn’t work out and I want to start “actual” job in few years, I’d be too old for starting without any experience(by too old she meant 26-7:P) etc. etc.
    The only moment when she didn’t agree with me but finally accepted that I’m doing it, was when I explained that she is looking for job security, and a good amount of money to do certain things, but that to me it’s more important to make enough to get by, even if I don’t get more than that, but to do it by doing something I love. Every job has uncertainties and stress, but if you choose the right one you will at least having satisfaction of doing something you enjoy. After all, if I fail I can always find a regular job, but if so, I’ll do it knowing that at least I have tried. I don’t want to live life wondering “what if” and wake up when I’m 90 and wonder why I’ve spent my life working something I really don’t even like that much. We should be taking more risks- at least in doing things that we really would enjoy. Things that would mean a lot to us.

    1. Good for you!! I’m in the same boat right now. Want to find a job that I look forward to every day, where I feel I make a difference, instead of just make money to get by.

  2. I like that – good study. Always tried to enjoy life more, maybe too much, but sometimes stressing about finances gets out of hand. If only we could all live off the land, enjoy what is in front of us, and not worry about economics, finances, or getting ahead.

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