If you’ve been reading this Blog for a while, you’ll know that I’m a big fan of tenacity – a fully signed up member of the “never Give up, don’t let go, Holding on” school of hard knocks. What’s rather encouraging is when I find out it’s not just me that thinks this is a virtue. In this latest Guest post we have some rather wonderful Words of Wisdom from a rather wonderful and wise lady. And as it’s her Birthday in a couple of days – this is a perfect opportunity to share her words. Thanks For Sharing Heather – And Happy Birthday!!
Learning to lose – Heather Wright
“I decided the remedy for all this malaise was for me to chase an elevated dream, an extreme dream; something that would require utter conviction and unwavering passion, something that would make me be my best self in every aspect of my life, every minute of every day because the dream was that big that I couldn’t get there without that kind of behaviour and that kind of conviction.”
I haven’t managed to catch much of the winter Olympics, a few bits occasionally when I’ve been awake early in a hotel room. Although I was nearly late on the morning Lizzy Yarnold won the gold for racing head long down hard ice at 80 mph on a tray! Brave lady.
Every other time I have tuned in it seems to have been curling. It is wonderful to hear people get passionate about a sport that they have worked on for years when it may not be as popular as others. To those of us who don’t understand or maybe care about their sport it can seem like a disproportionate response when we see the emotion they bring to their successes and failures. After the Men’s team achieved silver Jonathon Edwards interviewed one of the Women’s team who had won bronze. The women’s team, I found out are world champions and presumably expected to win more than bronze. She talked of having to pick themselves up after failing to secure a place in the final and how difficult it has been. It would have been easy to throw it all away. She then said (and this may not be exact) “but of course that is part of being a sports person you have to learn to lose”. How true. It is harder to pick yourself up from defeat, it is easier to allow yourself to wallow, anger is easier than forgiveness, hate comes quicker than love and disappointment can simply destroy our will to try again.
Below is a link to a TED talk I came across recently – A woman who failed to swim from Cuba to Florida, having been stung by the most dangerous jelly Fish in the world. Diana Nyad is a great example of learning to lose. She sounds as determined and positive about her achievements as if she had succeeded. Her humorous and determined account makes the result irrelevant. She asks “so what is it you are doing with this wild and precious life of yours”
So I wonder if, maybe, we don’t deserve to succeed until we have learned to lose with the same amount of inspiration, passion and determination.
In the pitch-black night, stung by jellyfish, choking on salt water, singing to herself, hallucinating ……. Diana shares her experience as she just kept on swimming on that fourth attempt to achieve her lifetime goal of the extreme 100 mile swim.
“Isn’t life about the journey and not really the destination?”