Journey To Success

Enjoy the Sour Patch Moments and Play Better Than Your Last Game

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Ever experience a “sour patch” moment? 

You know… when you experience a bad moment only to have a sweet one right after.

(If you still don’t know check out this sour patch kids video)

A sour patch moment could be when you break up with that relationship and feel a sense of relief to be single again, only to realize you already miss the comfort from your partner.

Or that time you finally walk in your college graduation after four years of waiting to get out and be on your own – only realizing once you graduate that you miss the “responsibility of doing nothing” oh so much.

Funny how things work, eh?

My belief is we should always have fun, and be playful no matter how bitter or sweet the moments are.

At least that’s the way I like to act on things.

I actually had a bitter sweet moment recently.

I received a DVD in the mail of an interview that a T.V. station covered of me over four years ago when I was playing Arena Football.

I missed the interview when it aired on the local news and never got a copy of it… until now (view below)

It was a fun story about my usual antics during practice…. slapping five and dancing around.

Yes… salsa dancing at that. 

Don’t worry, I was the most focused and determined athlete in practice and during games, but I had to have fun in moments that didn’t need to be so serious.

Because what’s the point of trying to achieve your dream if you don’t have fun along the way… right?

It was a sweet moment watching that video.

I got to laugh at myself and remember the fun times I had playing professional football with my teammates.

It brought back a lot of bitter memories as well as I had played 14 games that season with a broken wrist and could remember the pain I felt every day as the broken wrist bone chattered with the surrounding bones.  Or memories of driving home after a loss for a 15 hour drive in the middle of the night with 30 very large men on a sleeper bus…  can you imagine the things done and said during these rides?  They were a trip!

(here’s me below in the middle bunk on the bus with my wrist protector on and usual gatorades to help with hydration after a game).

Good times.

Just shortly after I received the video above in the mail and had my bitter and sweet memories, I received a Google alert with my name.

I opened the alert on my iPhone and read this (view image on the right).

It told me that my NCAA All-Division record for most receiving yards in a single football game over 9 years ago… was broken.

Trey McVay of Northeastern Oklahoma State broke it by 7 yards.

I was waiting for this day to happen ever since I broke the previous record back in 2002.

It was inevitable, and I’m surprised no one broke it until now.

Every Saturday during football season I knew it had a chance of being broken, and it just so happened to be on that day.

I was happy earlier in the day and for a short while after receiving that update I was a little bitter.

You gotta enjoy the bitter sweet moments.

Later I found out that even though my All Division record was broken, my Division III record for the most receiving yards in a single game was still intact.

However, that to will be broken one day.

I just can’t win… can I? :)

You’re Only As Good As Your Last Game

My coach used to tell us that after we had a big win.

That we are only as good as our previous efforts and every game should be played at a higher level because we have that much more experience to work with.

So what does this all mean and why am I sharing this personal moment with you?

My point is we will always have bitter moments, go through challenging times, and have our records broken.

I don’t think the feeling of success is as sweet without the bitter moments we face along the journey anyways.

I’m really happy for Trey and hope he gets to enjoy holding on to that record for more than 9 years… however his record will also be broken one day.

Should I give up, or focus even more?

I’ve got big goals and even bigger dreams (my parents are the ones to blame for making me dream big ;).  The moment I learned my record was broken, I felt bitter – started dancing – and then began to focus even more on my game plan for achieving the goals I’m going after right now.

We all have a choice to let the bitter moments rule our thinking, or let it become the driving factor that gets our butts in gear to play our next game better than the last.

Fact is, I can’t try to hold onto my “claim to fame” of some record I broke 9 years ago anyways… if I’m not playing big now then what does it matter when I retired from football so long ago?

Every day I’m thinking about the goals I want to achieve short term and long term and I take action each day to achieve them.

I hope you are doing the same thing.

Of course, you want to enjoy your life, and live the way that makes you the happiest, but if you are going after big goals and dreams you can’t be holding on to past achievements.

Next time you have a bitter moment or someone breaks one of your records just remember one thing… you’ll always feel better right after you start dancing.

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30 comments
Nathan Pennington
Nathan Pennington

Lewis,

 

Loved this man. You and my brother Paul are identical hahaha:)  He played for the Erie Freeze, now coaching the West Pennsylvania Sting Arena Football Team and is also now playing semi-pro ball with the Erie Express. Thanks for sharing your story. 

 

Nate

 

 

 

 

 

MrInnerG
MrInnerG

This post was spot on. Needed to read that today. And the dancing episodes on the field were hilarious!

MissTramTran
MissTramTran

Sounds like a perfect plan. Let's live for the moment;)

Wes Towers
Wes Towers

Cool video, Lewis. Here in Australia, our football, soccer to you guys in the US, is played much more differently, but the fun times are more or less the same...not that I played professionally like you. Thanks for sharing the video and photo, mate. You had me laughing at your antics. :)

About the sour patch, well, we all go through that at one time or another. The best thing about it though is if we will accept it as it is, move on and even learn from it.

willbingham
willbingham

haha ..... That's Awesome that you had your own news segment for dancing.... You should send this video into ESPN

ChrisReimer
ChrisReimer

@seanmalarkey I never looked all the way at the bottom. What the hell is that convo doing there? PICKLES!

Steve Elerick
Steve Elerick

Lewis, the best part about a record is you set the bar that much higher for the next individual to obtain. Therefore, it took someone 9 long years to break your record. Setting the bar high should always be ones goal. You've been a mentor of mine for several years now and you never cease delivering over the top content. There is no doubt, you are going to achieve everything you desire, as this is the nature of your competitive fire! A great lesson taken from this article and video is enjoy the moment. The drive to win is always the goal, have a good time getting there makes it worthwhile. Thank you for sharing this Lewis.

paurau
paurau

We learn the most about ourselves during these bitter sweet times. Some of us bounce back quickly--what is called a high response to negativity. Others get stuck in the disappointment. I am one of the former. I experience the moment--then take action to remedy the situation and be better than ever. I was passed over for a job once--and it hurt. But, before the day ended, I registered for class that would provide me with the knowledge that held me back. I Aced that class and moved on to bigger and better positions in the future. If had not had that perspective--I would plateau in my career. I won't let that happen. Ever. I control my destiny--not someone else.

RonaldSherbert
RonaldSherbert

Great Times and Great People playing a Great Game!!!!!!

neverstopsearch
neverstopsearch

Thanks for a nice reminder Lewis. Felt a bit down just before watching your video, and it is amazing how quick my mood has changed and smile appeared on my face w/o me even noticing it. It seems that this message came at the right moment for me.....still smiling btw. You great! Wish you success and happiness!

kris ward
kris ward

Great lesson Lewis!! And look at your baby face!!!! ;)

Kat Hanna
Kat Hanna

I think you kind of exemplify that idea and with all the ruckus of the economic downturn and people losing their confidence and having hard times - this was a particularly relevant blog post - so thanks for sharing! BTW I really think that everything you do is top notch - your LinkedInfluence, your webinars, your work with Sean Malarkey and your email blasts with offers - so thanks for being such a positive example to us!

Kat Hanna
Kat Hanna

This was really moving Lewis and I'm glad you shared it. You seem like a guy who has is made - from a perspective of a person who follows you. I particularly liked this "We all have a choice to let the bitter moments rule our thinking, or let it become the driving factor that gets our butts in gear to play our next game better than the last."

JohnTaumoepeau
JohnTaumoepeau

Great share! I agree with you 100%. Too often individuals focus on the negatives and not the positives. Along the way....they don't have any fun on top of it. Good reminder!

SeanMalarkey
SeanMalarkey

@RizzoTees ROFL - I should have and I should have done it as a reply to that so it would have appeared there #damn

SeanMalarkey
SeanMalarkey

@RizzoTees lol for some odd reason this convo is showing up on Lewis' newest blog post. Insert evil grin here ;)

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