We were born with the capacity for wisdom. As beings of energy we continue to accumulate knowledge at every step of the way. We were also born with “shadows”. Our shadow follow us everywhere, but changes is size and shape depending on where we are and how we are positioned.
I was ending the summer losing in 4 tournaments in semi-final rounds. Reaching the semis is an achievement but you only get a trophy for winning or making it to the finals. I was disappointed in my game especially since I know that I should have won at least 3 of those four matches. My trophy case looked the same as it did last year with no new entries. I ended up getting on the court and beating myself almost every single time. It was all in my head and I lost the matches before I even played them.
When I heard about a tournament last weekend I was determined to turn these losses around and apply what I had learned about mental fortitude. I got onto the court and blew through the opening rounds making it to my fifth semi final this summer. Here I was again in the semis facing an opponent that was levels better than me. From the looks of things this was about to be the toughest match of my summer. I was doomed to perpetual semi-final losses.
But..this didn’t faze me. I got onto that court believing in my game and believing that I could win. I got onto that court and played one of the best matches of my life. In the end I lost 4-6, 4-6 in a closely contested match where my opponent had to fight to win. It should’ve been a massacre but I had the belief. He commended me and admitted that he was lucky to win that match. For me this was a HUGE win. Better than when I got off the court winning matches at 6-0, 6-0.
I left my shadow on the side lines. I refused to be consumed by the negative thoughts and the fear of defeat that plagued me in previous matches. I had belief. In the end it wasn’t about winning. It was about playing my best game ever…and every time. If you are not going to give your best effort then why bother to show up? Even when I hate my job, I am going to do my best job until I move on. Wherever you stand ..there you are. You have to be present in every moment.
At the end of our existence, shadows remain. These are the ghosts that define us. If we choose to stand with our shadows behind us, we are the master of our shadows.