"Winning is fun, sure. But winning is not the point. Wanting to win is the point. Not giving up is the point. Never letting up is the point. Never being satisfied with what you’ve done is the point.” — Pat Summitt
Most of you followed along with the CrossFit Games this past week, and if you did we saw a lot of the same! Fraser crushed the men, Tia was more dominant than ever, and seeing as how no one is willing to contend with Mayhem aside from us (wink, wink) they literally crushed everyone else's soul for the most part. My point isn’t to really summarize the events, you guys can look back and see what happened by visiting games.crossfit.com. My point is that there are about 200 people who compete in those 3 categories and only a handful of winners, so did everyone else lose this week? Was it pointless? Did they waste a few years of their life if they weren’t crowned the champ? Maybe a full year of training or time they could have spent doing something else to make more money or to further their career outside of the sport? Are those the thoughts they should have today? Absolutely not.
Sometimes we glamorize winning the official event so much that we forget how much we earn, learn, gain and essentially “win” in the process of chasing it. Those that didn’t win a medal this week learned what it was like to give their all and come up short. All the athletes had some ups, and some downs through the week and through the year where they learned to battle adversity, handle success and still find a way to keep their eyes on the prize. Not just that, they physically and mentally pushed their body and mind to the brink of breakdown. When you play a sport like CrossFit most of our “real life” seems easy because of the adversity and struggle you are willing to experience in order to improve a limitation or just be more fit all around.
I know a lot of you likely don't do CrossFit and that is fine. This post is about more than that. This post is about winning and not winning. Notice I didn’t say “losing.” While I have not won many events in my life, I have never considered myself the loser. Most people will consider it a crafty way to keep my confidence but I truly view not reaching my goal as simply an opportunity to learn, to grow, to change, and to try again. This is what draws me to sport in general and why I wish that every young person in the entire world may be exposed to it. It teaches us how to bounce back, how to deal with success, how to help others, how to communicate, how to sacrifice, how to lead, and most importantly how to follow. We will experience all of this in real life and it will likely be at the cost of a lot more than a W or an L on a piece of paper, those moments in sport will carry over in how we choose to respond.
Winning isn’t everything, and it surely isn’t the only thing. Pursuing the victory or winning in sport and in life is everything and is the only thing. Have the audacity to chase the number 1 spot on the team, to chase the highest trophy in your sport or the highest position at your job. If you don’t get it or don’t make it then welcome to the team. Most of the greatest athletes and greatest CEO’s and greatest companies in the world started slow, started small, had their fair share of losses and some even publicly and embarrassingly. But, they stayed the course, they adapted, it made them stronger, they were persistent and they continued chasing the “win” even when they didn’t have success. This isn’t something we should aim to do in moments, this is a lifestyle choice.
Live in Victory Everyday.