Does it feel like you are being conditioned to see life from the perspective of “lack”?
This pandemic puts a demand on one of our most prized possessions, the freedom to move about the earth. With all of today’s lifestyle constraints, we all need to protect our attitudes, and have some sense of a future to clear the way for a victorious mindset.
For some (drawing from my football experiences) life has you feeling like a star running back with no front-line blocking; and the shots to the rib cage are beginning to hurt, and that’s not right!
We ask, where is my protection?
It reminds me of a Wednesday afternoon film session. We were in a darkened room sitting theater style watching yesterday’s scrimmage, play by play. Only quarterbacks, running backs and wide receivers were in the room along with four amped up coaches telling us what we did wrong.
I recall this one play that was a life lesson for me.
One of my teammates, a running back, was handed the ball as he broke through the line of scrimmage. I will never forget how the coach paused the film, and ran it back, and back again, and again…there was quiet in the room, just a grumbling among a couple of the coaches. They were about to unload on someone. They saw something that made them mad. The running back coach then made it all very clear…he said to the running back who was carrying the ball that play, “What are you looking at? A place to fall?”
Upon close examination, it was clear that he was looking down at the ground. You could not see his eyes, but the position of his helmet gave him away, it let you know what he saw as his future.
Coach said, “Do you know the difference between top running backs and average talent?” He said, “Top running backs keep their eyes on the end zone, because that’s where they intend to go. Average talent gets a yard downfield and starts anticipating how they’re going to hit the ground.”
Whoa! Think about how profound that is. Life often makes us feel just as unprotected as a running back with an unreliable line. The strike by the opposition is so fast that it seems wiser to ‘protect’ the ball than to advance it.
In every play of life, our line of sight is a choice. And in a crisis, just like game day, the outcome of the game is dependent on small choices. When I recognized the value of what this coach said, life applications began to appear daily. And even today, in the midst of civilized chaos, the ‘top running backs’ will bounce off the opposition and find a way, even if it’s unconventional, to advance the ball in ways that are so creative they become next season’s highlights. I have shared with my Team this analogy, in the context of how we can look up and see the opportunities in this season, or we can look down and see the pandemic. It is not to make light of the pain of being tackled, but it is the attitude of never giving up, and certainly never looking for a place to fall.
I am grateful when I say that our Team at VisionWise Capital made the choice early on to look up and find the opportunities…and there are many. We are benefitting from the number of apartment properties being sold in this difficult economy. Statewide legislation and COVID-19 has created an opening, whereby properties have become available for sale that would have normally sat dormant for generations. This season of circumstances has accelerated the desire of aging property owners to be free of the hassles of property management, retiring from the game and becoming season ticket holders in the press box with no operating responsibilities.
We know that every play in football does not end with a touchdown. But that is what makes this metaphor of life so analogous. Life, like sports, must include preparation, training, and practice before going up against game-day opposition. And though every play does not cross the goal line, every choice can become next years highlight film if you choose to look up and not down.
This lesson finds itself contextualized in the five categories of life I call “The Five F’s”. We train up our family, we practice our faith, we strategically plan our finance options and line of scrimmage play calling, and prepare daily, both physically and intellectually to have the fitness required of us in the fourth quarter of play. When we live life looking up toward the goal line and with an attitude of victory powered by a vision, we get to huddle with our friends and experience life’s greatest victories.
Look Up! I know it is a difficult time with large opposition. “Success” is not what you have done, or what you’ve become; Success is what you could have done or could have become if you were to only choose to look up!