Sunday, 9 September 2012
When ParalympicsGB's Jody Cundy was disqualified from the C4/5 1km time trial last week over a problem with the starting gate, he was denied the opportunity to compete in an event for which he had put in four years of arduous training. And in the heat of the moment, he said some things that he later regretted and apologized for.
One comment he made at the time was: "I've just wasted four years of my life." In the circumstances, his frustration was understandable. But when he'd had a chance to cool down, he got back onto his bike, saying "I guess I'll have to do another four years now because there's a kilo title with my name on it. I want it back."
There are no guarantees in life. We can't always expect to achieve our goals. And sometimes the obstacles we encounter along the way are unanticipated, unreasonable and insurmountable. But that needn't stop us from having goals and striving to achieve them.
We should do what we love and love what we do. If Jody Cundy loves cycling, then it's never a waste of time for him to ride his bike. Time is never wasted when you're doing what you love.
And a goal is only as good as the structure it creates. If the structure is good, then the goal is worth pursuing, but if you don't have any appetite to do what it takes to achieve the goal, pick another goal instead. Because you'll spend far more time training than you will relishing your victory, even supposing that you do succeed.
Life is about the journey, not the destination.