I always watch the Olympics
on television. I don't mean
that I don't want to be at the real goings-on, but
generally, that's not possible. Now, mind you, I am not
obsessed by it. I just like to watch. I just like to
see the champions, the aspiring gold, silver and bronze
medal winners. I like the pomp and ceremony, the
excitement of a world-class event.
As I watched the games of the
last Olympiad, I found
myself holding my breath as the participants won or
lost by mere fractions of a second. I looked into their
eyes as they were interviewed by the media. The winners
reflected joy, excitement and great satisfaction. Those
who did not win gold medals received silver, bronze or
none at all. But, in my opinion, there were no losers.
All the athletes at the Olympic games were winners.
They won just by being there, just by showing up.
As I watched, I was struck
by the similarity between
the games and life itself. We are all part of a very
significant Olympics, we are all participants in the
Olympics of Life. And the Olympics of Life continues
everyday of our life. We are already winners in this
great Olympics because we've showed up, we are here to
participate in the game of life.
True, the game of life has
many players, all six
billions of us on Earth. And we all play different
games. Some play baseball games while others play the
games of "doctoring" or writing, or running a small
business or heading a giant corporation or saving
whales or parenting or whatever you could think of.
There are more games going on at one time than you
Not everyone in the Olympics
wins a gold or silver
medal. Some earn bronze, while others come in fourth or
sixth or even last. But in the game of life, everyone
has the opportunity to be a gold winner. And how do you
do that, you ask? By being in the game, by being
prepared, by having a sense of purpose, by knowing your
And who is your competition?
You may be surprised at
this. Your competitor is only YOU of yesterday. All you
have to do is be a little better than the YOU of
yesterday a little bit better than you have been. We
all play different games. There's no one else on Earth
with the unique combination of experiences, talents,
gifts, abilities and perspectives as you. If you look
at the game this way, you'll find that no other person
is your competition.
And, yes, if you really like
your game, you generally
have an edge-- a very powerful edge. As you play your
game of life-- doesn't matter what your business, job
or calling may be-- play as if you cannot lose. Because
you've already won-- you've showed up. But to get the
gold, everyday, practice to be better than you were
Don't judge yourself too harshly
when there are seeming
setbacks. Even the greatest athletes in the world have
experienced failure at one time or the other. Failure
can be defined as the time we spend between successes.
Learn from your failures and keep on keeping on. Give
others a hand as you play the game. They are not your
competitors, they are only fellow players in their own
games. It is a mystical thing, but it seems that as we
help others, we actually help ourselves.
From the moment you were born,
you entered the Olympics
of life. If you have watched some of the games of the
twenty-seventh Olympiad, let them inspire you "to
strive to seek, to find and not to yield." Only YOU can
play your game and win the gold or silver or bronze.
You've already paid the price to get to where you are.
Wherever that is-- near the top of the mountain or the
bottom of the ditch-- start again with a whole new
outlook. You can get to the top of the mountain. You
can get out of the ditch. You may be surprised how
close you are to victory. So, go for the gold!
Meet John |
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is the award-winning author of the bestseller, "When You
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