I have often said that “where we want to be is in direct proportion to what we do with where we are now.” This statement in my personal life and career has proven to be so very true and, once realized, has been a catalyst. So much of life, if not purposed, is spent “on the sidelines” looking into the game being played all around us on a daily basis that is changing and shifting in spite of our feelings and opinions. I personally believe that most of the time this is determined by the choices we make and our lack of involvement in the game, rather than strictly based on talent, opportunity, and handouts.
Many of us have BIG dreams, aspirations, and possibly even a vision of what we’d like our future to look like…but are we ready to “GET OFF THE BENCH?” That’s the question.
Let’s look at this for a minute. We are dressed in uniform…from the socks to the helmet. We even have on our shoulder pads and our mouth guard in. But as we look up at the clock it’s already in the fourth quarter and the game is almost over. We don’t even have one grass stain. Why is this? Remember it has less to do with talent or what has been afforded us, but rather what we doing with those things. Some of us have had more than enough schooling or continued education. We have so much training that we ourselves are certified to teach others, but yet there we stand “on the sidelines,” paralyzed, afraid to jump in, apprehensive…what if I get in and I don’t have what it takes. Sound familiar? I say JUMP!
I am a father of three and I remember when my kids were smaller and they were just learning how to swim. You fathers know what I’m talking about. There they were…BIG eyes wide looking at you in the water from the “side” of the pool. They wanted so bad to be in the water, but were so unsure of what would happen if they just let go of their inhibitions and “jumped in.” But what happened the moment that little one let go and you caught them and they realized they weren’t hurt, but safe in the water? IT WAS ON!!!
I want to encourage you about what you can accomplish. One of our Nation’s greatest leaders, Abraham Lincoln, is a true testimony to “getting in the game.” Oh no…he wasn’t always a winner. Matter of fact he entered the game in 1832, but wasn’t elected President until 1860. Between those years he lost his job, was defeated in state legislature, failed in business, his sweetheart died, has a nervous breakdown, was defeated for Speaker, defeated for nomination for Congress, lost re-nomination, was rejected for land officer, defeated for nomination for Vice President, again defeated for Senate, AND THEN HE WAS ELECTED PRESIDENT!! Talented…not so much…determined ABSOLUTELY!
I’ll give you one more, a more modern day example. How about Michael Jordan? My favorite Michael Jordan moment actually didn’t take place on the court. It was when he said these words. “I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed”.
So what am I saying? You are needed in the game. Let’s re-write tomorrow’s headlines to read “YOUR NAME” made a memorable debut, coming off the bench to finish with a game-high “A LOT OF” points, wowing the crowd by nailing seven 3-pointers in 10 attempts. When the “YOUR TEAM” ran off the floor with a 131-62 victory, local fans had a new hero in the lanky kid with the AMAZING game and Magic-like charisma.
“GET OFF THE BENCH”
David Villa, CEO