Run Like a Champion

Let nothing stand between you and the goal!

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I had a dream recently about one of my nephews. This kid is a tiny one, but all boy.  When he was little, the amount of energy the little dude unleased was unimaginable.  He would be jumping, running, playing, and getting into any and everything he could.  He wasn’t scared of anything, believed he could scale mountains, and the fear of getting hurt never entered his mind.  Many times, his energy got him into trouble, but nothing ever stopped him from trying. 

In my dream, there was a massive company in town that was holding tryouts.  He managed to convince me to take him to the place where tryouts were being held.   He refused to allow me to drive, and he would not walk. Instead, he literally ran too many blocks to count to the location.  Naturally, I was running after him, trying desperately to get him to slow down,  but there was no point. He was focused and on a mission.

We made it to the location, and I finally caught up to him.  While struggling to learn how to breathe again, I started trying to give him a pep talk before he went inside for the tryouts.  You know, all the usual stuff, “go in and do your best”; just try your hardest, everything will work out fine;” “don’t be disappointed if you aren’t chosen.” Those types of reassurances.    He, however, gave me no opportunity.  He looked at me and turned around and ran through the doors.

I immediately follow him inside and see a long hallway and notice he is running full speed toward where the judges were seated.  I remember standing in the doorway thinking, this guy is determined.  I watched as he approached the judges. He did not register; he didn’t talk to anyone; he just approached them, gave them his name, and walked away. 

As I was headed to the stands to watch the tryouts, I was thinking he needs to rest or stretch or do something to get himself warmed up or prepared.  He apparently didn’t think so.  He instead simply lined up with the rest of the participants and on the ready, took off running once again at full speed.  In the middle of his sprint, he began to do a series of incredible and complicated flips that shocked the entire stadium. He had everyone suspended in time while they watched him performed.  Even the other participants stopped to focus on him. 

When he finished, he casually walked back to the judges’ table, with poise and confidence, as if this sort of thing happened every day.  He seemed baffled as to why everyone seemed shocked.  Sure enough, he was chosen right away by the judges.   As for me, I was sitting in the stands with my mouth wide-opened in complete shock and disbelief and the single thought, he just owned that moment. 

As I woke,  I meditated on the dream as it related to my life and my own journey.  For me, in many areas of my life, I live like that champion daily. However, I have also had to admit that there are many areas of my life that I find myself walking when I should be running or needing just one more pep talk when I should just be running. Way too often, I realize that I am waiting when I should be running or trying to warm up when I should be running. Most of the time, I am looking around wondering what everyone else is doing or focusing on what others will think again when I should be running.   

I am a fitness nut and my trainer said to me recently, a champion owns “it.”  I was confused for a second because I didn’t understand what “it” was.  But I realized “it” didn’t matter.  Whatever “it” is, champions own it.  Whether “it” is working a job, working out, giving a presentation, cooking, writing a paper, being a parent, dancing, starting a business, or even walking down the street.  Whatever “it” is, a real champion owns what he or she is doing.  They hold their position with truth and humility not fake modesty because they know that they have earned the right to be present at the moment.  They are prepared, focused,   disciplined and intentional.  A champion has sacrificed, not just himself or herself, but their time in pursuit of the dream. As a result, when they step into any moment, they step into it with certainty that the moment and the space that they are occupying belongs to them and them alone.  It really is impressive when you think about it because the champion understands that the motivation must come from within.

My nephew wasn’t hesitant. He was not doubtful, and he did not second guess himself. Instead, he recognized his purpose and ran into it.  He focused his attention and his energy on his objective and executed on his goal. He owned his moment like a champion.  He understood his assignment and committed to it.  Thereby moving from a world of possibilities into the reality of accomplishments. 

It has taken me a minute, but I get it now.  The power is in the execution.  A lesson learned from a determined child, let nothing stand between you and the goal.  Run, don’t walk into your greatness.  Resolve the internal conflict.  Look inside of yourself and find your determination and motivation.  Keep taking the steps and do not allow outside influences to cause you to hesitate. Instead, act.  And do it with confidence and assurance that the moment is entirely yours and you are prepared.  Move beyond the realm of possibilities into the reality of accomplishments and own your life like a champion. 

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