Happiness and frustration go together. This may seem counter-intuitive at first blush, so let me explain.
Quoting author and marketing guru Dan S. Kennedy in the November, 2013, No B.S. Marketing Letter, “There seems to me to be a connection between the amount, the frequency, [and] the severity of frustration a person can handle and the kind of success they achieve.”
Quoting author and AEI president Dr. Arthur C. Brooks from his Summer, 2009, “Why Giving Matters” article in BYU Magazine, “Happy people show up for work more, work longer hours, work more joyfully, and are happier with every aspect of their productive lives. Happiness is the secret to success.”
So, happiness and frustration go together.
Happiness and missing tiles might not seem to have anything to do with one another, but bear with me.
Dennis Prager described “The Missing-Tile Syndrome” in his book Happiness Is a Serious Problem.
The syndrome refers to anyone who will look at a ceiling and focus on a missing tile instead of on how the rest of the ceiling is beautifully intact.
He says that people who suffer from this syndrome tend to be unhappy. They focus on what is wrong with their lives instead of on what is right with their lives.
If we focus on what is RIGHT with our training and racing instead of on what is WRONG with it, then we can be happier runners and walkers.
Happiness breeds exceptionality, and exceptionality breeds happiness.
There is a lot of talk now about exceptionalism, which has been defined at Wikipedia.org as “the perception that a country, society, institution, movement, or time period is ‘exceptional’ (i.e., unusual or extraordinary) in some way”.
John J. Miller, Director of the Herbert H. Dow II Program in American Journalism at Hillsdale College, wrote in his “Football and the American Character” article in the September, 2013, issue of Imprimis, “It may be that sports are a manifestation — or possibly even a source — of American exceptionalism.”
This made me think about endurance sports and the word exceptionality, which has been defined at Wiktionary.org as “the quality of being exceptional”.
I walked the cool, lightning-delayed, and rainy 2013 Houston Half Marathon last Sunday with my wife, and along the way we met two half-marathoners who exemplified exceptionality and happiness.