Monday night I watched the college football National Championship game between Alabama and Georgia. You probably know (or in case you don’t) Georgia won after it looked like their quarterback fumbled away the game with around 11 minutes to go in the game by playing great defense and the quarterback stepping up and seemingly willing his team’s offense to play better. Why am I telling you this? Because after Georgia won, quarterback Stetson Bennett was interviewed and in response to how he lead his team back he said “Just keep fighting. Keep your mouth shut. Work hard. Life is tough, you just have to fight through it.” That’s right, wisdom from the mouth of a 23 year old college quarterback that applies to all of us.
He could have given up after his costly mistake. He let his team down, as well as himself. When the camera showed him you could tell he was upset. But the next time he had the ball in his hands he went 3-3 in passing taking his team 76 yards in 4 plays for a touchdown to retake the lead. Of course football is a team sport and the defense stepped up and did its part too.
Most of us work on teams and know you need all hands on deck to be successful. What if one of your team members isn’t pulling their weight? They could be lazy, still learning, or just out sick. Do you focus on that or do you see the deadline looming and rally the team to stop complaining and get the work done? There are times you just have to fight through the noise and focus with the end in mind.
Maybe your the team member letting others down. Maybe you have something going on in your personal life or are unhappy you were passed over for a promotion given to someone you think didn’t deserve it over you. Whatever is happening, focus and fight your way through. Complaining about anything is noise and distraction, and will never get you your desired result. Passed over for the promotion? Show them why they made a mistake through your actions. It goes further than telling someone they were wrong and will have better results in the future.
We all have moments we can choose to sit down and wait for the next chance or fight, keep our mouth shut, and work hard. It’s obviously better to be recognized as someone who will not give up in the face of adversity. Whoever your work helps will notice, be it co-workers and superiors, clients, or someone else. Doing so may not result in you holding a national championship trophy like Stetson, but odds are you will feel just as good by knowing you gave your all and did the best you can.