Back while playing high school football, my coach always gave my teammates and me the opportunity to improve. Or OTIs as we liked to call them. Get in trouble in class. That’s an opportunity to improve. Get low grades. That’s an opportunity to improve. Have your parents call in and tell coach your attitude at home sucks. That’s an opportunity to improve. See the pattern? OTIs always took place after practice when we were completely drained from the scorching Florida heat. They always consisted of some physical activity that would push us to the limit. Timed gassers until our legs gave out or coach got tired of blowing the whistle (he rarely ever did). Or pushing the football dummies the length of the field and back multiple times. These were just two of about a dozen of OTIs that we’d be given if we got lucky. Even though the pain from these OTIs was almost unbearable, in a weird way, I appreciated them.
Because of all the OTIs that I received, I now view my shortcomings and mistakes in a different light. I don’t look at them as fuck ups I can’t recover from. I view them as an opportunity to improve… Minus the extra stuff my coach made us do. Looking at my mistakes and shortcomings this way has helped me progress in ways that I can’t even imagine if I didn’t have this mindset.
No matter what mistakes I make along the way, or the shortcomings I face, there will always be one certainty. I’ll always have an opportunity to improve.