The Madness of March has finally ended and if you happen to be a college basketball fan then you were treated to one of the most exciting tournaments that anyone could ever ask for. Over the weekend the underdog ULCA Bruins almost pulled off the upset of the decade only to have their hearts broken on a last second shot by Gonzaga that sent them home in tears. Two nights later Gonzaga experienced that same sort of heartbreak as their dreams of a National Championship and unbeaten season were crushed by the Baylor Bears in a game that really wasn’t ever that close.
That’s the nature of sports, isn’t it? One day you experience the highest of highs, the next day the lowest of lows. After the game on Monday night, Charles Barkley summed it up perfectly as he stated, “Sports is a Cruel Business!” Gonzaga was a team that had been unbeaten for the entire season and won almost every game by double digits. Some were comparing this team to the best teams of all time. And yet on this night, the last and most important night of the season, they weren’t up to the task.
Sadly, no one will remember what they accomplished this past year because people only remember what you do today. Barkley’s statement is so true- Sports really is a Cruel Business.
That statement has stuck with me all week and as I’ve had a chance to process it, I’ve come to the understanding that it applies to much more than just sports.
Think about your own business and your personal journey. You may have accomplished some amazing things in the past. Maybe you’ve even set some records for sales or production and been recognized by your organization or your peers as a high performer. Over the years you’ve been rewarded and promoted to the role you currently reside and up to this point you’ve had success.
You have probably developed some incredible relationships both in and outside of your business. The time and effort you’ve invested in those relationships has propelled you to become the person that you are and provides the fuel and drive needed to keep performing at the highest level.
It’s certainly ok to celebrate what you’ve accomplished in your career and your life and I hope you have taken the time to do just that. It’s also important to remember that your teams, and those around you probably aren’t all that interested in what you’ve accomplished in the past. More often than not you will be measured not by what you’ve already done, but by what you do today and in the future.
Think about it. If you choose to suddenly stop showing up in the way you have, all those great accomplishments will soon be quickly forgotten. Your teams will become unfocused and demotivated and your business will underperform. Your most important relationships at work and at home will soon disintegrate to the point where you no longer recognize them.
While everything you’ve done up to this point in your career and your life is truly important and meaningful and has helped you become the person you are today, recognize that it won’t mean anything if you do not step up and meet the moment today. In life, every day is the championship game, and know that it’s yours to win or lose.
The past is just that, the past. What are you planning to do today, tomorrow and beyond? That’s what will be remembered and that’s what will help you win in your own personal version of March Madness.
It may not seem all that fair, and it certainly isn’t easy. If it was easy than everyone would do it. Just like Barkley said “It’s a Cruel Business”
How are planning to show up in your business and your life today?