“When the messenger of misery visits you, What are you going to do? What will keep you in the game?” – Unknown
A moment ago your universe came crashing down all around you. Your hopes and dreams have collided into the arctic ocean and dissipated in the roaring waves as the they crash into the shore. You tried to reach for something which has now been flung into the abyss. It seems further than ever. Defeat has visited you and defeat wears a size 13 boot which is now placed on your back, grinding your face into the ground. Striving, pursing, and gaining, these words seem abstract as you sulk in failure. You feel anger deep throughout your body, contempt in your soul, and sadness in your heart. Your thoughts move outward as you think of who is to blame for this failure. You think of those who didn’t believe in you, those who doubted your actions. They are surely to blame. Its them, you think. Its them who caused this. You want to prove them wrong. But, maybe their right. Maybe, you can’t cut it. Maybe, you should get comfortable right where you are, on the floor.
Defeat has visited all of us at one time or another. And there are two paths you can take through defeat. Luckily you have a choice as to which one it will be.
The first is the path of the victim. The victim will internalize the failure. They use it as a crutch. The victim allows the failure to define who they are. The words “if only” is the mantra of the victim. For the victim allows the hardships of life to mold their spirit, to devour their drive. The victim will be the first to tell you they “would have” and seek pity because they didn’t. They look at the obstacles as the very thing that keeps them in their current state. Its easier for the victim. The victim believes they are playing the role of the hand they were dealt. And, the victim truly believes there is no other way.
The second is the path of the warrior. The warrior looks at defeat as a lesson. It’s the “don’t do that again” voice in their head. The warrior seeks challenges after defeat to re-mold their spirit. The warrior will build their life from the hardships they’ve encountered and become stronger because of them. The warrior never says “would have” but “will do”. They never seek pity for the challenges placed before them. On the contrary, they look forward to the obstacles, knowing they will survive. The warrior becomes uncomfortable in staying still, because they know action is the remedy to defeat. For action is the antidote.
The warrior is not only a term to describe the spirit forged in combat; it’s also a mindset forged in the path to greatness. It’s the mindset you need to win the tiny battles fought in the path toward your goals. I could easily have used the word “survivor”, but a survivor merely survives. The warrior will survive; however, the survivor may not always be a warrior.
Defeat occurs time and time again throughout our lives. And at times it’s a crushing blow. Never stay on the floor to long, always move. Keep moving. Make great the resources of each day. Take action in whatever you hope to drive toward. Never wait for someone to carry you or give you a hand. Decide now, whether you will be a victim or a warrior.