We can agree that things are pretty unusual right now. I am not sure anyone of us reading this would have ever predicted the reactions to COVID-19 that are happening in our country. The mob mentality that is breeding anarchy isn’t quite finished. The craze of toilette paper hoarding amid a viral outbreak is genuinely mesmerizing. Our economy is responding with alarm. Our leaders are shooting from the hip. Social media instantly connects us to the crazy. (Which makes ordinary people crazed because if they don’t respond in kind, then they are left without.) And in the meantime, all this will have a substantial effect on our businesses. 

So, how do I rise out of this chaos? Control only those things in your control AND realize you have the control. 

In my youth, I was a football player: from a tiny kid to one small high schooler. And I would like to think I was pretty damned good. In high school, I had a coach look at me and say: “Randy, you will not start for me. See that kid over there. He is twice the size of you. You may be one of the smartest players I have ever coached. But he is bigger. I can coach him to be smarter. I cannot coach you to be bigger.” 

So here is what I did: I quit playing football. I know, quitting is not a conventional way to start an inspirational story about Randy rising to beat the man and control his destiny to become the number one defensive player in the tri-county area. That’s because this isn’t that story. It’s a story of a self-reflective moment to control the thing I desired. 

Being the middle child, I was very self-reflective early in my cognition of life. And so I asked myself in this scenario–what did I actually want out of playing football? The answer reasonably simple: I wanted comradery, and I wanted to compete. (I am a super competitive person.)

Now let’s make one thing clear. I loved (love) football. There are many reasons (some physiologically seated) that I wanted to play football. However, in my brain, it only made sense that if my coach could control my destiny to be satisfied with comradery and competition, then: 1. I change that person or 2. I change myself. Well, we all know that we cannot change anyone. I chose to change me. I left the football field for the football pitch. I controlled the thing that I could control. AND realized that I HAD CONTROL. In soccer, I was able to find the comradery and competition that I desired. I devoted myself to learning a new skill. I found a leadership role. I played for the school, for rec leagues, and indoor. I took control of what I could control and won what I desired.

There is going to be a lot that is out of your control. The world is about to hand you a lot of default garbage. The love you devoted your life to is about to have a metaphorical coach pull the rug out from under you.


Click below to watch some practical ways to rise!