Hello SR Family,
As a young man in high school I played several sports. Competition invigorated me in every which way and each sport I played brought it out in full force. I was in strength and conditioning training in the Fall, was on the wrestling team in the Winter, and on the Baseball team in the Spring.
Eventually, mostly because my circle of friends were all on the basketball team, I began playing it more often and fell in love with the hardwood. Playing basketball was purely recreational at first but over time it became my passion.
Here was the problem
— basketball was also a Winter sport like wrestling and playing basketball during the Spring instead of baseball was the best time to practice because all of my friends played pick-up games after school. By the time I was any good at playing basketball I was entering my Junior year and I had some tough choices to make about being on the wrestling and baseball teams.
After two years lettering JV in wrestling and being groomed for Varsity my Junior year, I broke from the team.
My coach was disappointed but encouraged me to pursue my passion. I was only good enough to be on the JV basketball team but I loved every minute of it.
In the Spring of my Junior year I got my Varsity letter in baseball and stuck it out with the team even though it upset me every day to go to practice. My heart wasn’t in it and it was felt by all. The coaching staff had a number of conversations with me about my low level of play and I began feeling like an outsider in a game and in a group of people where I used to feel welcomed. I had chosen to do what was expected of me because it came with a Varsity letter instead of doing what I loved.
It was the first time in my life I felt the pressure of prestige and being recognized publicly guide me instead of my passion.
Missing out on practicing with my friends that Spring made me work that much harder during the Summer and Fall to make the Varsity basketball team in my Senior year and I did just that.
Our team made it to our League Championship that season and playing on that team and getting to be apart of that game was one of the best memories I have of high school.
Going from never having played organized basketball two years before that season to being on a Varsity team that was playing in a championship game sparked something in me that led to revelations of walking in purpose in every other aspect of my life.
Until you participate in the pursuit of your passion and decide to let that passion lead your life, you will endure pain, regret, fatigue, and build substantial resentment toward others and sadness for yourself. You are painstakingly aware when you are living outside of your calling and, even when you are unsure of what the calling is, you must put all of your energy into finding it and giving it your attention instead of settling for what you know you don’t want.
There are countless successful people who never tap into their full potential because they are succeeding in something they have no passion for. They allowed a title, a little bit of recognition, or some money to be more influential than their purpose. This is an abuse of your life’s beauty — overcome the internal battle to measure up to society’s definition of success and embrace your own.
Continue to prosper,
T. Johnson-Bean, Founder
Author, Speaker, and Coach
Edited by: Michael W. Coulter
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