Ah, The Sweet Taste of Victory!
You know what I mean - you climb into the shower, still half asleep and there is just something about that steaming water forcefully pounding about your head that wakens you ... not always just to a new day, but sometimes to a new thought! Thinking about that movie, I got to wondering about our pursuit of success. We each define it differently, and I worry that sometimes we are not clear enough in that definition and in that lack of clarity - fail to find what we are looking for.
Then, the strangest thing happened... I got some goofy country western song all mixed in with my thoughts about the movie! I am not really a country music fan, much preferring Bach to Brooks and Dunn, but I do find important life messages in some of those twangy tunes. Today it was a message in the one about looking for love in all the wrong places. It made me think that when it comes to success, we might be looking for the wrong thing in all the right places.
There is merit that perhaps some of us are looking for success in the wrong places. However, what if we are looking in the right places, but instead of seeking success, which carries a potentially different meaning to each of us - we begin to look for victory in our endeavors instead?
Thoreau tells us, "If one advances confidently in the direction of dreams, and endeavors to live the live he has imagined, he will meet with success unexpected in common hours."
If you think of the word victory, do you not think of an absolute win? Or perhaps being triumphant? Does your mind do like mine did and posture a more concrete and positive response than "success?" How would your thinking change if you approached your next goal with a "victory" in mind? What would you do differently in the pursuit of a particular goal if you knew you couldn't fail? What would happen to your confidence if you imagined yourself as already victorious? What different energies would you experience, knowing the outcome was Victory?
Let's go back to the movie... from the beginning we see Don Haskins as a coach with a dream of being victorious by winning with guts, heart and grit; winning with self-respect; and winning even when the odds were completely stacked against him. We have to look at Haskins as that small-town family man trying to make an indelible mark in his first job as a collegiate basketball coach. Little did he know his underdog team's incredible victory would transcend sports and change not only his life and the lives of his players, but the country itself.
Just how many of your goals do you approach with that kind of passion?
There were major social changes occurring in 1966 when Haskins decided to play an all-African-American opening lineup at the NCAA championships against the all-white juggernaut of the University of Kentucky Wildcats. Haskins did it to win the championship, but his bold decision would help break down barriers of segregation that affected every segment of society and set a new course for the future as his team did the one thing they could to prove themselves to a watching world: they played their hearts out.
One of the things I noticed throughout the movie was that each coach had a different agenda. Haskins truly was coaching to the integrity of the win, motivating his players with positive suggestions intended to touch their heart space. Kentucky's coach, on the other hand kept pushing at his players to do whatever was necessary to win because his paycheck was on the line.
Wayne Dyer speaks to that, "When I chased after money, I never had enough. When I got my life on purpose and focused on giving of myself and everything that arrived into my life, then I was prosperous."
What kind of bold decisions could you be making, and how could they impact not only yourself, your community, your industry and perhaps your country if you played to win... played to be intentionally victorious... played your heart out - with integrity?
Until the muses run again...