Complete silence; awkwardly looking at my teammates as they pondered, like me what our coach was going to say after we played our hearts out but fell short in the boy’s volleyball sectional match. Our coach began the dreaded speech, “The fact that we lost doesn’t matter”. I glanced around to see if anyone else had the same dumbfounded look on their face that I did. He continued to say, “The fact that I know each one of you left it all out on the court and tried your best, winning really doesn’t matter”. This speech truly shook me and would forever change my attitude towards competition and academics.
Before the sectional match I was under the impression that winning was the only determinant on how well you did. To me winning was everything in athletics and in life in general. After contemplating my coach’s words I realized that the only things in life that you can control are your attitude and how much you want to try. My attitude after my coach’s speech changed the way I looked at and entered into athletic events, academic challenges and life situations. I now enter into every situation with the mindset that I am going to do my best and try my hardest with every opportunity, without worrying about the outcome. I have succeeded because I have done the best that I could do and the rest is out of my control.
This mindset of trying and putting all my energy and focus into what I am doing has helped me become a better me. I have succeeded because of this both in the athletic realm and in the academic arena. There is no greater feeling that I have had when I try my hardest and have success. If I do not give one hundred percent I would have failed by the world’s standard and my own personal standard.
A tough question to ask yourself after a game, test or competition is, “what if I had tried harder, would the outcome have been different?” I never asked myself that question after an important tennis doubles tournament that year. We were in a close match...