What if you truly could never lose? What if every failure wasn’t the end but the beginning? What if you truly are invincible? What if you actually believed that?
I recently took our four-year old daughter, Aracelli, to the park for a daddy-daughter date afternoon. It was unseasonably cold, so we had the place to ourselves, except for a few brief moments when another family showed up. That was when the little girl Aracelli was playing with taught me a powerful lesson.
Make up the Rules as You Go
Somehow, I managed to be “it.” “It” of course means that I am the designated chaser. No adult ever chooses to be “it” or ever knows why he or she is “it.” It remains to this day one of the greatest mysteries of humankind: the origin of the “it.” But I digress…
As the “it,” I was charged with chasing two little girls around the park. Up and down ladders, over the bridge, down the slides, until, at last, I caught my daughter and tagged her. As I triumphantly celebrated my massive accomplishment and announced the passing of “it” status to Aracelli, Eleanor announced something remarkable:
“You have to catch us twice,” she yelled. She was making the rules up as she went.
She can always win.
She can never be defeated.
I recently made a terrible parenting mistake. One that I swore I would never make. I’ve seen far too many well-intentioned people make this mistake. They want to prevent a loved one or someone they lead from feeling pain, making mistakes, embarrassing themselves, or accidentally going against a social norm.
What was that terrible mistake that I made?
I told our four-year old daughter, Aracelli, not to play in the mud. Worse, I got mad at her for doing so.
That may not seem like a big deal to some of you. After all, there are important things to protect. Like our carpet, her clothes, and her lady-like behavior.
“Whenever you leave behind failure, that means you’re doing better. If you think everything you’ve done has been great, you’re probably dumb.” ~Louis C.K.
Darin Sargent was born with a gift. It might not look like a gift to you and me, but Darin thinks it is.
Darin was born with only one hand. Here’s what he writes about it:
I have been born with a unique gift of having only one hand and it has helped me see life from a different perspective than most. I believe what you read on my blog and in my books will reveal that to you and in some way help you with the challenges that life seems to often bring our way.
I don’t know what Darin would be doing today if he had two hands. But I do know this…that when he walks into a room full of antsy teenagers to tell them that they can overcome obstacles, two-handed Darin doesn’t stand a chance. One-handed Darin, on the other hand, commands immediate attention.
“The most dangerous poison is the feeling of achievement. The antidote is to every evening think what can be done better tomorrow.” ~Ingvar Kamprad
So you’ve been knocked down. Now what? How do you bounce back from defeat? That’s what today’s episode is all about.
The reality of life is that you will suffer defeat. There will be times when you choke, succumb to pressure, or just lose it in the furnace that is a stressful and important situation.
At almost every major golf tournament each year, someone “blows it.” Someone who has never won a major championship before (there are four each year), leads with 18 holes to go. Or perhaps even only three or four holes. And they “find a way to lose.”
“I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed, I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.” ~Michael Jordan
What price are you willing to pay to achieve your dreams? What sacrifices are you willing to make to support someone else’s dreams? This is a story of sacrifice, heartache, and impossible dreams. It’s also the story of determination, love, and eventually…a man living out his dreams.
Sports journalists aren’t supposed to tell you to root for someone.
They are supposed to report the news, stick to the facts, and leave it at that. But this story makes that impossible. This story has an underdog, someone who shouldn’t be there, someone for whom even the most hardened of sports journalists must cheer. And tell the world to do the same.
And so the Los Angeles Times told it’s readers a few weeks ago to root for a golfer named William McGirt.
Imagine having everything you’ve ever wanted within reach. In fact, everyone is already congratulating you on your achievement. You’ve done it. You’ve reached the rarified air of the truly elite. Now what?
If you’re Ted Williams in 1941, you put it all on the line. That’s why he is one of the greats. I’ll share his story in a moment.
Your big goal
What’s your biggest goal? The one overarching thing you want to achieve in life? The one thing that wakes you up in the morning and keeps you up at night?
Imagine hitting the goal. Imagine the feeling of success. Imagine the satisfaction that comes with achieving it.
Now, go find out what you are truly capable of.
“People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing. That’s why we recommend it daily.” ~Zig Ziglar