“It is not true that nice guys finish last; nice guys are winners before the game even starts.”

Today’s message is especially dedicated to the great Frank Freeburn of Nike.

Are you a tennis player? Then I know who your next match is against…


The only real competitor you will ever have is yourself. Think of your opponent as your teacher and your student. You each do your best as you test and teach one another, revealing where your opponent needs to improve, as he or she does the same for you. Once we view competition in this manner, we can strive to do our very best, without succumbing to overtones of hostility and negativity.

When we overcome the combative state of mind, when we no longer have opponents-only people like ourselves, brothers and sisters in training, all striving toward excellence-we achieve the highest potential in sport. This is equally true in everyday life, when we compare and compete with others over who is the most popular, most attractive, most successful. The key, it seems, is to maintain a balance perspective, appreciating the value as well as the pitfalls of the competitive mind-set in sport of life. It’s not that people who maintain a balanced perspective never compete; they just don’t take it too seriously. They remember that a game is just a game-and from their perspective, life, too, is a game.

The moment of truth itself, whether in performance or competition, can serve as an exciting stimulus to excellence. Yet its purpose ends when the race ends. Once we catch a fish, we no longer need the net; once we cross a stream, we no longer need the boat. And when the competition is over, we need not linger over scores, numbers, or statistics. We don’t need to preserve past scores like prize butterflies. When we let go of our preoccupation with numbers, statistics, titles, an victories, we rediscover the sheer joy in the process of training, learning, and striving toward the heights of our potential.

Once the game is over, the outcome is history. Fame is fleeting, and glory fades. The only lasting value in the competitive experience is the lessons we learn and live.

(From Body Mind Mastery by Dan Millman)


Help support the Arthritis Walk on Sunday, May 3, 2009 at 10am in Princeton Forrestal Village, Princeton, NJ. Join Team CanDo or just donate. Contact Team Captain, Alex Hunter for details: traininglight@ or visit (Mercer County Walk)

0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Please answer the following: *