I remember trying out for our elementary school's basketball team. First, we did some drills without a ball. I was thinking to myself, "Isn't this supposed to be basket BALL? Where's the ball?"
When the senior players finally came out with basketballs, we all got very excited! Finally, we could show them what we could do with a basketball!
The very first drill with a ball was practicing chest passes. But then, my crush passed by waved at me. After waving back at her, boom! I got hit in the face by the ball. (I really wanted to hit my partner so hard! He was just so good at catching the ball.)
Lesson: Play basketball for the joy of it, not to impress girls.
Obviously, I didn't make the team and I felt really bad.
Fair or not, we allow other people to make judgements about us based on how we perform in one particular moment or one particular day. Very often, those judgements last a very long time, if not forever. And they affect us and our lives for better or for worse.
Now that we're grown up, it is no longer the senior players on a sports team making those judgements. It is the senior managers or partners of the companies deciding whom to promote. It's the people we do business with deciding whom to give their account to. It's our readers, subscribers, or customers who decide whether to know more about our work. It's our teachers and professors who grade us. It's our critics who, fair or not, has something to say about us and what we do. It's practically everyone who has something to say.
Again, fair or not, we give them "power" over us. We give them "power" to affect our lives for better or for worse.
Well, if they're affecting you for the worse, take back that power from them. You are more than your past mistakes and miscues. You are more than a single performance in a single moment in time.
If I never took back my power from the senior players of the elementary basketball team, I probably would never have played basketball again. I'm so glad I did.
Only you, and God, know who you truly are. Only you know what you're capable of. Only you know how good, no, how great you truly are. And who you truly are is, more often than not, far more than who you think you are.
Image: Evonne on Flickr