Note: This blog entry was first written in May 2006 shortly after a highly regarded Ottawa Senators hockey team was eliminated from the Stanley cup by the Buffalo Sabres. This prompted my thoughts about the difference between winning and losing.
There has been much debate in Ottawa about the failure of the Ottawa Senators to meet expectations in the Stanley Cup. The team that showed so much promise in the regular season “choked” again in the playoffs. So what is it that makes a winner?
Vince Lombardi (famous football coach) suggested that “Winning is a habit. Unfortunately, so is losing”. He also said, “It is essential to understand that battles are primarily won in the hearts of men.”
In most competitions the difference between winning and losing is inches, fractions of a second or one goal … and generates a never-ending round of “if only” stories. In the game of life we only need to be inches better than our competitor to win the contract or get the job.
My own belief is that to “win” at anything requires good planning, solid preparation (training) and a commitment to the task. In professional sports the first two are “given” and the commitment is formidable in all participants but probably the difference in commitment is typically the deciding factor. The Buffalo Sabres did something better than the Sens … and that was their level of commitment to win.
In every day life, you can win by being better prepared than the other team or by executing a better plan either of which is evidence of “wanting to win” more. Are you prepared to make the level of commitment necessary to win … or are you going to be saying “if only …”?