There are plenty of things to take away while watching the Olympics. Fashion tips, ideas for new tricks on the hills, in the half-pipe, or on the track, new ambitions, or realizing that maybe dreams can come true (for some people).
You may not realize it, but going to the Olympics is a dream come true for most of the athletes there. Sure, they want to win gold; but competing there is the culmination of a lifetime of work. Their efforts have paid off. It may have taken 20 or 30 years, but they were determined.
Few of us have such drive (well, maybe just not me). Or the time. I mean, if I spend 40 hours a week at work, and 70 hours sleeping, I only have 58 hours left for video games and eating (and driving to and from work). How am I ever going to beat the stack of games calling my name if I only give them 58 hours of my time? That’s only 8 hours a day, 7 days a week.
But some people have different priorities, I get that. It doesn’t mean their goals are easier or harder than mine. It just means they have goals and dreams.
Another thing we can learn is how to accept victory and defeat. Even the reigning Olympic champion can be dethroned. An up-and-coming competitor can finally run the race of his/her life. The champ can have a bad run. Lots of things can happen. But, even in the face of staggering loss, sometimes we see the champ congratulate the winner.
Let’s face it, would we do that? Even if the winner was a good friend [and I’m certain these athletes see enough of each other to be good friends (or casual enemies)]. But, if my goal was to make it to the Olympics and win gold again and I faltered…well, that’d make me mad and sad. In that moment, to overcome myself and congratulate my opponent–an inner strength–that’s something I’d probably not do.
Maybe I’m just petty. Or weak. Or lazy. But the Olympics put into perspective how a person can rise to the top. Olympians (usually) represent the best of humanity, not just in athletic prowess or determination, but in how they conduct themselves (at least in front of the camera).