Never Take Your Foot off the Gas
This year’s Super Bowl will go down in history as one of the best ever. No matter what you think of Tom Brady, you have to admit that revenge has a biting sting. During the first half of the football game, I sent a text to a friend who was at the game rooting for the New England Patriots. He sent me back a note and said, "Feels like the game with you.” He was referencing the Buffalo Bills vs. New England Patriots three months earlier that we attended together. Well, the Buffalo Bills won the game, thanks in part to Tom Brady not playing because of his “Deflategate” suspension.
I sent him back a text at 7:12 PM EST stating, “Football is won in four quarters instead of two. Keep the faith, my friend.” He responded, "Good point." At 8:42 PM, the Patriots tied up the score and went on to win the Super Bowl in overtime.
What happened in the 60 minutes of the Super Bowl is a story that legends are made of and one that people will talk about for ages to come. If Tom Brady walked away from football today, his greatness is already enshrined in the Mt. Rushmore of Greatest Quarterbacks, along with Roger Staubach, Fran Tarkenton, Joe Namath, Warren Moon, Dan Marino, and Terry Bradshaw.
Here’s the deal. Tom Brady and his teammates never flinched or took their foot off the gas. These are my top five takeaways from Super Bowl 2017:
Success Starts with Making One Play at a Time – So many times I’ve seen people who do their best to make a quantum leap with their business from a sitting position. In the spirit of the movie and book Moneyball, seek to get on base instead of attempting to hit a home run every time one steps up to bat. I intentionally mixed metaphors to make a point.
Take one step today that is out of your comfort zone. Then take another step the next day. It may be making an extra phone call, asking for a meeting, and improving your customer service. Whatever it takes, never quit. You may be closer than you think.
Desperation Is More Powerful than Defeat – As the New England Patriots emerged from the tunnel in the second half, they were down by 25 points with two quarters to go. Most sports enthusiasts had already written them off and said there was no way they could come back. It’s never been done in the history of the game, let alone the Super Bowl. They started playing the second half with desperation written all over their faces. Every play mattered, and they didn’t waste any time but executed with precision.
Go Big or Go Home – In football you have the ability to kick for an extra point or run a play and get two points. The gutsy move to go for two points was genius. In your business or life, ask for more; don’t settle for what you are given. In life, you don’t get what you deserve; you receive what you negotiate or go after.
The Darkest Hour Is Just Before Daybreak – There were countless Patriot fans who left the game early or changed the channel because they couldn’t deal with the disappointment of not winning their fifth Super Bowl. In the words of Robert Schuller, I'm convinced that “tough times don’t last, but tough people do.” Where is your fight? Where is your grit? There have been many times when I wanted to give up and say it wasn't worth it. Every time, and I mean every time, just when I said, "I’m done and don’t want to go on," I would receive a message in the bottle from the universe to keep going and not give up, to stay the course.
Maximize Your Moment – The Super Bowl is the biggest stage in the world. The preparation during the off season led up to this one moment. However, it was a series of micro-moments that led to this one epic opportunity. This is similar to when Russell Crowe stands in the Colosseum in the movie Gladiator and says, “On my command, come together as one.” All of the battles that he had fought led up to that moment. Tom Brady has been in the National Football League for over 17 years. Time, seasoning, and past success created a deep well of experience for him to draw from in the most pressing hour.
How will you show up when faced with your greatest moment?
How are you maximizing the micro-moments, because they are creating the one moment when everything comes together for you?
Who you are when no one is looking is who you are. When your moment comes, I invite you to stand up and totally dive in head first.