May 07 2009
I wish I knew where that quote came from, if you do let me know in the comments section. This quote really sums up what makes a good athlete (or business person, or student, or person) into a great athlete.
How does this quote work so well? It handles defeat in a gracious manner and learns a lesson from it. It reduces jealousy of success and begins to work on your own. The quote also lets you be humble and ask for help.
Everyone has setbacks. We all lose from time to time. The greatest coach of all time, John Wooden, won 10 NCAA basketball championships. He went 4 years without a loss, but he did lose from time to time. He did not get mad, he learned why they lost and made the team better. He was always looking for the little details that would make the team better. John Madden was the same way. Everyone knows him as the NFL commentator and the Video Game producer (which is by the way the most popular all time game now), but did you know he has the best winning percentage of any NFL coach with 10 years or more? Why did he win so much? Like John Wooden he learned from his losses and always looked at every small detail to find out why he lost and tried to make his team better. They did not get bitter, they got better.
Living by this motto helps free yourself from being jealous of success. There is one sure way to ruin a good run and that is by becoming jealous of others success. It gets you distracted from your own goals. Being jealous of others success begins to put negative thoughts in your head. It begins to make you think that the world is not abundant enough for the both of you. You begin to think of them as an opponent. You lose focus on your goals and once you have lost focus on your goals you begin to fail.
In reality the only place with one winner and one loser is in sports. In real life there is a lot to go around, there are a lot of Win-Win deals out there. By constantly trying to get better you begin to run into opportunities. You focus on yourself your goals and how to get to where you want to be.
To get to what you want you have to ask for help. There has never been a great athlete who has not had a coach. Everyone needs help. There is always someone who has some knowledge that will help you. They have thoughts on how to achieve your goals even if they have not done it before. Instead of getting bitter from a defeat and focusing on how to get better you begin to realize that you may need some help. Asking for this help is a huge step. Let others help you to focus on your goals and you will reach them faster and with less pain than you could have ever done on your own.
So next time life gets you down, and you don’t know what to do, Don’t Get Bitter, Get Better.