This week we are watching the competition of the Summer Olympics in London and see many of our talented athletes miss the qualifying rounds for competing further in their fields. The disappointment they feel is often augmented by the eager reporters who gather around and ask them how they feel. Well, how would YOU feel if you had just bombed on world-wide television and knew that your failures would be shown in amateur videos as well as professionally filmed network clips — going viral over the web in moments. Yeah, that’s not really a question.
What we must remember is not the failures of these brilliant athletes – but the mighty work that has already gone into their abilities and talents to actually be among the chosen to represent their countries for the Summer Olympics. They are not failures in any sense of the word except within the narrow scope of competing against other equally well-trained and capable talents.
Case in point is the sixteen year old Ariel Hsing of the U.S. Table Tennis team. She went up against her idol, the 2nd seed from China. Ariel held her own, made some awesome shots, didn’t let her hero-worship blind her to her own abilities and won several games off her opponent. But in the end, she didn’t win the match.
Their Best is already better than MY best – and I’d be willing to say that is true about all the other arm-chair critics who are watching in the comfort of their living rooms as the beautiful, healthy, well conditioned, mentally centered and emotionally edgy young people we’ve all been watching.
Taking this larger lesson into our own daily lives – it reminds us that when we work well at something and give it all the effort, mentally, physically and emotionally that is required to do it to the best of our ability – we have already achieved something quite wonderful. We have given it our “all” and have done our best.
It doesn’t mean that with additional time and effort we couldn’t actually get better, it simply means that at this very moment – and we DO recognize each moment in the Now – we have accomplished something marvelous – we have given and done our best – we have put our heart and soul into the creation of this moment and the whole situation is something to be proud of.
Sure, go ahead and give yourself a pat on the back – because “hiding your light under a barrel” isn’t all that healthy or is it an honorable way to share how you show up in your life. You were given all your talents and abilities – your creativity and your vision – for the very purpose of “showing up in your God-ness.”
You are blessed with what you are, what you have, what you give and what you receive. In the sharing of these blessings – you awaken others to their own gifts and talents – not in a competitive sense, but in a way in which they can actually see that they are capable of opening up to their own talents and abilities that they may have been keeping buried in a barrel for a time. You give others the chance to see that it is really OK to give of your best…. even if it is not a medal winning performance at an Olympics.