For nearly two weeks the world looked to South Korea with anticipation as athletes competed for a gold medal at the 2018 Olympic Winter Games. Did you watch any of the events? I was able to watch a few events including figure skating, snowboarding and curling. The athletes make their moves look so simple and yet we all know countless hours of training brought them to Pyeongchang.
It is fun to celebrate with the gold medal winners like the United States Women’s Hockey Team and the United States Men’s Curling Team. What about the athletes who gave it their all and came home with no medal at all?
Steve and I watched the Snowboarding Women’s Halfpipe. This was the first year I have ever watched the event. One of the competitors, Maddie Mastro from the U.S., pushed herself on every run coming up short at the end of each run with a fall. Maddie had so many impressive moves and after her three runs was not able to stay upright on the final spin. Maddie went for the gold on every run. She had so much determination and perseverance to get the entire run perfect and in the end she went home without a medal.
Many of us strive to excel in our jobs, education and other activities. In addition to character traits like determination I believe there are three elements we can all use to help us reach for the gold. We need a trainable attitude, quality resources to give us the skills we need and a fan club to cheer us on.
Our daughter, Kim, pictured in the front left, was part of a gold medal winning team in bowling in high school. Thanks to the training from the coaches, the willingness to improve their skills and the support of many family and friends at the tournament the team was able to work through their nerves and bring home the gold!
I have witnessed the value of having those three elements present in one of my volunteer roles. When I was first appointed to the Cattlemen’s Beef Board I did not know a lot about what the board did. I had a willingness to learn, great mentors to learn from and friends who cheered me on. That combination is the reason I am chairman of the board today.
Meet my friend, Anne Anderson. Anne mentored me and encouraged to become an officer for the Cattlemen’s Beef Board. We both loved this donut display, not a gold medal but a reward in other ways!
In what way can you utilize the three elements in your life? Is there an area you would like to excel in? How is your attitude? Do you have the resources you need for the desired skills? Who is cheering you on?
Olympic athletes have a way of capturing our admiration because of their dedication to excellence. We can follow their example by encouraging one another, teaching one another and moving forward from our past mistakes.
Thank you to the athletes and the everyday heroes who seek to excel, mentor others and share their passion by encouraging others. Here is a slideshow of photos from the 2018 Olympic Winter Games showing many of those elements in action.