After watching a weekend of medal ceremonies at the 2012 London Olympics, I found myself more inspired by the athletes who didn’t win but who overcame some huge obstacles just to compete in the games.
Like Jake Gibb, a volleyball player on the American team, who’s a two-time cancer survivor (Golen, 2012). Or John Orozcon, a gymnast on the American team, who had a very modest upbringing in the Bronx and overcame a major injury to his Achilles tendon in 2010 (Batra, 2012). Or Kieran Behan, a gymnast on Ireland’s team, who doctor’s said would never walk again after he endured nerve damage and a brain injury, (Macur, 2012). But despite these amazing comeback stories, none of these inspiring athletes have won a metal.
The same thing can happen to professionals in the workforce.
In lieu of a gold medal, it can be devastating when you don’t get the raise you thought you earned, or land a job you knew you’d be perfect for, despite what you’ve overcome to get where you are.
However, in a professional career, athletic or otherwise, I believe it’s important to reflect on your progress as you look toward achieving a goal, despite failures along the way. This in turn can reinstate the faith you have in yourself and inspire you to move forward and eventually climb the ladder, land a career or stand on the Olympic podium.
Things won’t always go the way you want them to in your professional life, despite how hard you work, but motivating yourself with past accomplishments when you fall short may ultimately enable you to achieve your own career gold.
Do you look back on your progress to help move forward toward your goals?