Celebrate Being Your Best Today
By Colette Harris
That was good enough. What comes to mind when you hear those words?
It’s been a decade since I last competed as a figure skater, but “good enough” is a phrase I still battle with. As an athlete I believed that to be “good enough” I had to finish in first place or be the best skater at the rink. In sports, sometimes just showing up or finishing the race isn’t considered "good enough" by coaches, expectant parents, or the athletes themselves. I find for many people it’s often the results that count more than the experience. However, when athletes solely focus on results and develop a mindset that “good enough” means only being a champion, they miss out on a lot of the joy sports can bring. It can mess with their confidence, especially if their self-image is tied to how successful they are.
Today I define “good enough” differently. To me, good enough means doing my best and knowing that my best is all I have to give. If you put forth your best effort towards hitting a deadline for work or sticking to a healthy eating plan, odds are you will accomplish your goals. But even if you fall short, knowing that you did your best gives you the peace of mind and feeling of satisfaction that you have done enough. It’s about the journey to the destination, not the destination itself, right?
People who adopt this mindset know something others don’t – that they are enough. A gold medal, Grammy, or million-dollar deal doesn’t make them who they are. They know they’re made up of their values, likes and dislikes, and strengths and weaknesses. All of it together makes them good enough. And that is great.
Celebrate You – Just as You Are!
1.) Know Yourself. Everyone has strengths and weaknesses. The sooner you acknowledge yours the better you’ll be able to rock your gifts and make a plan to improve your weaknesses, if you choose. Strategize how you can capitalize on your best abilities and how you can improve in other areas of your sport. When you start seeing improvements in areas that used to be limitations, it can elevate your confidence. Accepting and loving yourself as you are – flaws and all – helps you realize that you are already good enough.
2.) Set goals for improvement, not outcomes. How often do you find yourself saying, next season I want to win a certain title or competition? It’s great to dream big and set your sights on a specific goal, but you want to focus on one that’s within your power to achieve. You have control over how you train leading up to a competition and how you perform at an event, but you can’t control where you place. You can’t control the outcome. Have the competition you want to win in the back of your mind, but set goals around how you can put yourself in the best possible position to place well at the event. Sit down with your coach and talk about what improvements need to be made in the year ahead and make small incremental goals around those.
3.) Know you are enough – no titles or championships required. You don’t have to be a super successful athlete to be “enough.” Just by being you, showing up every day, trying your hardest, and enjoying the process, you are enough. Titles and championships don't make someone who they are. Embracing the journey and showing up during even the hardest times does.
Wherever you are in your athletic career, pat yourself on the back, and know that no matter where you go from here, it will be better than “good enough” because you can embrace the journey and love sports for what they are – an amazing experience that builds character, friendship, and self-acceptance no matter where you place at your next competition.