Lately I've been working hard to get in shape. I see my personal trainer twice a week. Well, I actually can't afford a personal trainer. But I can afford to take a class with someone who is a personal trainer. So I like to sneak my nutrition questions in before class and pretend that he's my personal trainer. I know - the lies we tell ourselves.
Anyway, because I've been working out for a few months now, I naturally think that I am on the level of most professional athletes. Therefore, it only made sense that I start watching shows such as HBO's Ballers (parental discretion advised) centered around the lives of fictional NFL players.
In a recent episode, football star Ricky Jerret is seeking a new team. After mulling over multiple offers with his father (also a former NFL player), he decides to reject all current offers and go after teams with the best quarterbacks. The idea is that as a receiver Ricky would add the most value to those teams thus increasing his chances of winning a Super Bowl ring before his retirement.
So he has his agent reach out to a couple of teams with great quarterbacks to see who bites. One team replies right away requesting an impromptu meeting which turns into an intense game of catch with the quarterback that Ricky is hoping to work with in the near future.
During this high-stakes game of catch, the quarterback throws a pass slightly beyond Ricky's reach. Ricky jumps for the ball and doesn't quite get it. And the quarterback says to him matter-of-factly, "Come on, Ricky. You either want it or you don't."
I absolutely loved that statement because I so often give myself the third option of trying. You know that option - the one derived from the "you get an A for effort" system of evaluation. But at some point (maybe when I became a professional athlete this year) trying just wasn't good enough anymore. Having ambiguous goals that don't require any risk and leave room for excuses won't cut it these days.
In order to succeed, I must have the courage to clearly state what I want in life even at the risk of facing future disappointment. I have to stop being polite with my goals, saying things like "I'd really like to..." and "I want to try to..." rather than "I will do..."
I either want it or I don't. No excuses.