They call it a ‘high’ you cannot buy. An adrenaline rush that stays on for ninety minutes and more.
Fighting. Tripping. Scraping. Pushing. Shoving. More pushing. Tumbling.
Torn Muscles. Stretched Ligaments. Broken Vertebra.
Football may be just a game, but it really is so much more.
Watching the Rio fever pervade my life, there are some important lessons that I learn.
Lessons that can be learnt for work and for life.
- Community & Teamwork
Football requires an unique brand of teamwork that understands one’s role in relationship with the others’. Every player in a team is part of a collective fighting for the same goal and trusting them to do their job is of utmost importance. The team wins when the individual wins. And the individual wins when the team wins.
- Discipline & Hard work
Football is a game where the player needs to continually practise in order to hone skills. It requires a regimen of discipline and hard work. A sport that differentiates those who are willing to put in the hard work from those who don’t.
- Perseverance & Determination
Being the best means preparing, persevering, and practicing. Muller and Messi can vouch for it. As they prepare for their challenge tonight, they would confidently say that persevering is what got them this far. And if they stick with it, there will be a huge payoff in the end.
- Consistent Communication
No team can win without communicating to each other. They constantly talk to one another, encouraging each other, calling for the ball, telling others about the space around them, and how close the opposition are to them. Communication is absolutely vital; if the team does not communicate, it would be absolute and total chaos.
- Flexibility & Adaptability
This World Cup was by far more challenging than most, as the teams played games in varying climates, altitudes, and times of day, with long flights between venues and an infrastructure and culture that was prone to offer a lot of “surprises”. This led to increased risks of fatigue, injuries, and illness. The two teams that prevailed were the ones who were able to flexibly adapt, the ones who were most responsive to change.
- Substantial Support
There is this mushrooming support staff, an entire team of fitness experts, dieticians, physiotherapists, psychologists and so on who work tirelessly, behind the scenes to contribute to the game.
Tonight, as we watch the face-off between Argentina and Germany, one team will say at the end of it “Winning is Everything.”
However it is important for Team # 2 to say: Winning isn’t everything but making the effort to win is everything. Success to us has been hard work, dedication, and the determination that we have applied the best of ourselves to the task at hand.
We did our best. We gave it our all.
Leonardo da Vinci said, “Everything is connected to everything else.” May both the teams find happiness and success in their lives.