Relationships Are The Key To Happiness

by | May 4, 2018 | Blog

Building homes for people in need is a big part of what we do at Hope Sports. We invite athletes to take time out from training and competition, to get involved, to help others while reflecting on their own lives and careers, the good and the bad.

In the process of that reflection, here are a few questions we ponder:

  • What makes you sick?
  • What brings you satisfaction?
  • What empowers you to compete?
  • What enables you to survive competition and thrive in the middle of it?
  • What connects you to the joy that you had when you began this journey?

These are tough questions, there is no doubt. They’re difficult topics, and often, the answers are painful. But the good news is that by addressing them, you will see the message of hope transforming your life and making you not only a better athlete, but a healthier, more whole person, both during your years of competitive sport and long after that chapter closes.

This is important, because all too quickly, the journey will end, and you will have to connect to a purpose beyond your ability to compete.

 

“…all too quickly, the journey will end, and you will have to connect to a purpose beyond your ability to compete.”

The key to it all is something we talk about a lot. It’s an integral part of who we are, and it colors everything we do.

Your relationships are the key to happiness – and success

The key to it all is something we talk about a lot. It’s an integral part of who we are, and it colors everything we do.  I’m talking about relationships.

As human beings, we are wired to need relationships. Like a baby needs sleep and a baby needs food, a baby needs to be held, needs to look in the eyes of their parent … they need all these things to know that they are loved, valued, safe, and secure. Just like you don’t outgrow your need for food and sleep, you don’t outgrow your need to be loved and to be able to give love.

Josh Davis, the Olympic champion, says it best when he does his swim clinics:

 

“Kids, you want to swim faster? Be nicer to your brothers and sisters. What? you don’t believe me? Kids, you want to swim faster? Be obedient and respectful of your parents and teachers. What, you don’t believe me? Kids, never forget that bad relationships equal high stress and low performance. Good relationships equal low stress and high performance.”

 

Think about that. Bad relationships – high stress, low performance. Good relationships – low stress, high performance. Such a simple equation, but one that is easy to forget.

Keeping your house in order

Here is a bit of dialogue from the movie “Act of Valor”, which is actually performed by real Navy Seals. In this scene, they’re getting ready to go off on a very important mission. And before they do, their commanding officer says this …

“Fellas, you know I only got so many speeches in a given work-up or deployment. It’s like the chief and I said right at the beginning of this platoon. Once we step off on campaign, once this bird is ready and we’re downrange, everything back home needs to be in balance. We’re not going to be worth a lot to each other if we get over there and something’s out of whack. I mean, if things aren’t right with the family, if things aren’t right with the finances or something’s off, it’s gonna put us all out of balance. So, we need to have that right before we launch. If somebody’s got an issue, bring it up. Chief can take care of it, I can take care of it, everybody’s got each other’s back. Let’s make sure we lock that down, so when we’re ready to roll, all our focus is on the mission.”

Navy Seals are the most elite athletes on the planet. They are tasked with some of the most difficult jobs in the military and each and every one needs to be performing at their peak in order to support the rest of their team. They know that if you haven’t sorted out the emotional problems and tensions in your life, that if you are using your mission as a way to escape them, it doesn’t work. It clouds your focus. It’s like working with a 500-pound sack on your back.

Now, you may be so talented that you can do incredible aerial tricks with a 500-pound sack on your back but why would you want to?  Let’s be honest. There is a physical pain barrier in sport. If you don’t push beyond it, you don’t get to be very good, right?  Keep in mind that there is an emotional pain barrier in sport too. No one talks about it, but everybody experiences it.

There’s a great line in Chariots of Fire where a competitor who has just lost a race turns to his girlfriend and says: “If I can’t win, I won’t run.” And guess what she says: “If you don’t run, you can’t win.”

What this means is that there will come a point in your athletic career when you realize that the price of winning is dealing with losing. Losing hurts a whole lot more than winning. Winning feels good, but how you deal with that will determine your success, and your success will be reflected back in your relationships – not only in your relationships with other people, but in your relationship with yourself.

 

by | May 4, 2018 | Blog | 0 comments

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