The toughest battles we have in life are the battles we face everyday with our own minds. Sooner or later we all have to face the reality that what we have done, or not done in life has come from our efforts or lack there of. This is a tough reality for many as they are left with the choice of getting better to succeed or lower their definition of success becoming good at something that does not matter (video games, sports leagues, beer pong).
I recently attended the Wisconsin State Wrestling Tournament. This weekend brings me great exhilaration and sadness at that same time watching many young men who have worked hard their whole life for one shot at their dream. Excited for the victor I can’t help but feel for the one who came up short as he will forever think what might have been. Wrestling is a great sport because there is no one else to look at for failure but yourself. There is no quarterback to blame for a bad pass, no pointguard to point to for a missed free throw, or a pitcher to blame for a bad pitch. It’s just you.
Wrestling is a tough sport mentally because lack of success leads to two choices: get better or quit! Maybe it’s my background in wrestling that lead me to my future in leadership development. Mentally it’s challenging to be a leader as my lack of succes does not give me a boss, partner, or customer to blame. Much like wrestling if I am bad as a leader I have two choices: get better, or quit.
As a coach I would tell my wrestlers that not everyone can be a wrestler, we are the lucky ones. I used to think the same thing about leadership but I was wrong. Everyone can be a leader, but not everyone will. In an age when mediocrity is celebrated I salute those leaders in Life who aspire to be the change needed in this world.
Enjoy the journey,