My cable package is set, my box of tissues at the ready and my gym membership primed…it’s almost time…time to stop everything for 17 days. 17 days of extraordinary adversity, triumph, achievement and sportsmanship – the Olympic Games. While the world stops for 17 days, the athletes that compete and almost compete in the Olympic Games strive for the Olympic dream every day.
If only I could be that focused. The guts, determination, selfishness, ability to overcome adversity and say NO to friends, the willpower to get up early and do what hurts, the want to achieve what others consider impossible and the belief that it IS possible. That’s what it takes to be an Olympian. And to be an Olympic Champion…well you need to have that dedication x 10.
While we watch and admire athletic achievements at the Olympic Games, very few people actually understand what it takes to get there – or to become an NFL, MLB, NBA or NHL pro.
Olympians have mental toughness. They have the ability to train their brain to believe that the very physical and sometimes non-human training they do is normal, the ability to believe loss or defeat is a stepping stone or a motivator to success and the ability to put themselves first, the ability to prioritize their training, sleep and nutrition before anything else.
Sacrifice. It’s one word as a normal person I think I understand, but really, I don’t. Olympians understand that sacrifice leads to success.
As athletes around the world compete to represent their country for the Olympic Games this month, I am inspired to redefine my goals, prioritize what makes me happy and learn to say no if it challenges my dreams. I challenge you to do the same.