Photograph: Werner Schmidt

Friday, November 11, 2011

Is Winning Everything?

I stumbled over a new ‘rowing book’ the other day. The book, Chariots and Horses (October 2011), might interest the readers of HTBS. The book is by Canadian Jason Dorland, who is an author, performance coach, and professional ‘motivational speaker’. Dorland shares his experiences as an Olympic athlete, coach, and entrepreneur with the intention of inspiring and motivating others to re-think their approach to business, sport, and life. On his website Dorland writes “Growing up in a culture so focused on results – namely winning – it’s no wonder that athletes today have forgotten to engage in the process of finding, and being satisfied with their own personal excellence.” Read more about the book here.

I have to say that I found this quote interesting. When I grew up in Sweden, I never felt any pressure to perform in a winning way. It was first when I moved to the USA, I felt how the whole society is pushing people, especially children in school and in sports, to do their utmost to win; if you are playing a game, you are doing it to win, nothing else. There is not such a thing as playing for fun. Well, I have a problem with that attitude, so my book order is in, and I am looking forward to receive and read Dorland’s book. More about the book later.

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