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Bode Miller - Should I aspire to be a "Bodeist"?

Bodemiller I watched the winter Olympics this weekend and had a chance to watch Bode Miller from the US ski team.  What a disaster!  His performance was dismal.  No medals and often didn't even finish his events.

Whats worse, it seemed like every other commercial was by Nike and it featured Miller sitting casually in a dark room (cave?) saying how the Olympics are not about winning the gold but about the experience.  At the end of the commercial I was asked if I wanted to be a "Bodeist" - - I guess they wanted to know if I wanted to be like Bode Miller.

At a January press conference Miller brazenly claimed to have competed in past events while under the influence of alcohol.  During a TV interview on the slopes Miller reported "I'm not getting drunk the night before the races".  So I guess he's getting drunk all other nights? 

Contrast that with the German 4-man bobsled captain who would not give an interview and was not seen much by the press - - he goes on to win gold. I got the sense that this German is totally focused on the matter at hand which is to do his absolute best at the Olympics.  He played full out.

Bodie Miller lacked the fire, focus and drive I'm used to seeing in Olympic athletes. Instead we get these lame Nike commercials with Miller telling us "it's not about the gold". Yeah right. If it's not about the gold then why go to the Olympics? Miller says you go to have fun. Of course you go to have fun. AND you go to win!

When did we lose the ability to combine the two - - playing really hard AND having fun? I see this in youth sports, kids are either taught to "have fun" (and not worry about the score) OR play to kill.

Does your team struggle with being great, being their best, AND having fun doing it?


Marie Munro, Parent and Teen Coach

I agree that competing to win seems to have left the equation. Competition is good. Learning to win and aim high should be encouraged. Learning to lose/fail teaches us how to improve. I think that so much emphasis is put on the fun rather than the winning as everyone is too concerned about how the losers will feel. It's an important learning process and part of life!

Shonnie, Leadership Coach & Speaker

As an avid athlete myself, I think there's an important distinction to make--doing your personal best vs. playing/competing to beat others. When we compete against others we become adversaries and put forth an energy of violence and domination, not to mention separation. When we participate to do our best--whether that means getting a PR (personal record), using a new skill, not making mistakes we've been working to correct, etc.--we "win" even if the scoreboard shows a different outcome and someone else doesn't have to lose. I believe it's much more important that we teach children (and remember ourselves) to do their best--focusing on their own skills and abilities--rather than telling them that the goal is to beat or best someone else.

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