“Focus on the journey not the destination. Joy is found not in finishing an activity but in doing it.”
― Greg Anderson
My team and I have a huge opportunity this Sunday. We are 3 points away from securing the gold, with two games remaining in the season. When big opportunities arise in life, people often worry about getting over-excited or over-confident. This is often accompanied by a fear of failing. I think with most opportunities in life, big or small, these are not things that will ever be helpful to spend your time worrying about.
There are a couple of things that help me in overcoming these mental obstacles. The first is putting everything into perspective. For this opportunity, I take a step back and look at the entire season. In my mind, this game is no different than any of our previous games. It’s not that I think this game shouldn’t be thought of with great importance, it’s that every single game leading up to this point has been just as important, just as big of an opportunity to gain three more points towards securing the gold, and therefore they’ve been just as important in reaching our final goal. Having approached the previous games with this attitude makes it that much less stressful to think about how to approach the next game. Also, having seen and felt the growth that our team has had over the previous games gives me even more confidence in this team that we will be able to succeed in this next game. Even having gained a little perspective about it, it is still really exciting that the end goal could be secured after this game; I can’t help but have a smile on my face.
Another thing that helps me when big opportunities arise is to reflect a bit on the value of the situation. I like to take the time to appreciate what it has taken to get to this point and how awesome it is to have this opportunity. Today, it’s not just the huge opportunity that we have in this next game, but I can find so much happiness in the fact that I have the opportunity to be playing this beautiful game everyday. I am in an environment which is filled with support from members of the club and trainers and fans who want us to succeed. I have family and friends, as well as former coaches and teammates, who are eager to hear about my journey, and while they may miss me, they continue to show me love and support for what I am doing. These things are amazing and I can really appreciate how much each and every person has helped me become the person and player I am today.
Lastly, I ask myself questions like, “How did I get here?”, or “What have I done to deserve this opportunity?”. I don’t ask these questions because I don’t think I deserve this or because I don’t know how I got to this point, but because it is in the answers to these questions that I can reinforce my confidence in my team and myself. We’ve worked hard to get here and we’re going to continue working hard until we accomplish our goal. And then we’ll set another.
Ultimately, when it comes down to it, there is only what you have done to prepare yourself for this opportunity and how you can pull from that to be your best self in this moment. Just enjoy it.
-Photo courtesy of Finn Lassen