In my early teens I played on the local Ho-Ho-Kus, NJ community soccer team.
And to be blunt, our team was not so good. I was a small kid who could run fast, yet dribbling the ball and my ability to actually score goals was pretty awful. I played left wing on the front line, which is primarily the offensive line (or something like that!).
I remember one Saturday morning in particular when we were getting totally pummeled by another team. My Dad was on the sideline doing his best Dad support thing, yet inside I was just feeling awful – I was not having fun.
About half way into the match, we had moved the ball down the field within scoring distance and yet again, we didn’t score. Wow, we were awful!
My friend Paul was in our defense line. He was bigger than me, could run super fast, and was fantastic at blocking the ball. In short he was a great defensive player.
After not scoring again, the other team kicked the ball down the field and it ended up going right to Paul.
And then the most amazing thing happened. Paul began to dribble the ball down the field at a pace I had never seen before. He was like a tornado. He did not pass the ball to anyone on the front line, which normally a defensive player would do. He simply WAS the ball. I remember him moving down the field with such fierceness, speed and clarity of purpose that the other players were literally moving out of the way – it was as if a force field were pushing everyone away. And within about 3 minutes, Paul scored a goal. And then other!
Paul’s clarity, his commitment, his fire, his passion, his anger, his talent all came out. And now, here I am writing about him over 45 years later. Talk about impact.
As I work with folks to support them to play their Bigger Game in life, I remind myself of Paul’s power. Sometimes (not all the time) we need to find that power, that sense of anger, that ‘I’ve had enough of that’ to light up our jet fuel so we give ourselves full permission to let it rip.
Who cares what position you’re supposed to be playing (Paul sure didn’t). Who cares if you’re all of a sudden working outside of the norm to get something done?
Where in your life is it time to declare and then ‘run down the field at full throttle’ to score that goal that you are longing to make?
Here’s what I know: When you find that level of passion and compelling purpose and give yourself full permission, your Bigger Game will move forward.
I promise. Just ask Paul!
More to come.