Since we moved to San Diego, over a decade ago, my husband has been a diehard Chargers fan. Every year I hear the same two sentences: “This is our year! The Chargers are going all the way.” Then a game like yesterday’s happens.
With less than seven minutes on the clock, the Chargers are looking victorious with a 13 point lead over the New Orleans Saints (34-21). By the time I return from a break, the game is over with a final score of 35-34. Saints win.
“What happened?!” I ask in disbelief.
I’m not a football expert, and I realize that a lot goes into losing a sizable lead in the fourth quarter. But since we are in fact entering the fourth quarter of 2016, I thought we could seize the opportunity to learn from the Chargers and put winning strategies in place to take on and win our fourth quarter.
Lesson 1: Fourth Quarter Wins Are a Team Effort
Fourth quarters aren’t won in a vacuum. In the words of Chargers’ nose tackle, Brandon Mebane, after their loss:
We want to win, we just have to figure out the fourth quarter as a team. We are not going to point fingers at anybody. We win as a team and we lose as a team.
This weekend I did something I rarely do. I watched a basketball game on television. In fact, it was the first game I’ve watched the entire season. It was game six of the NBA playoffs, Warrior vs. Thunder, a nail biter of a game regardless of who you were rooting for.
Warrior fans watched their team trail most of the game. Thunder fans watched their team fight for every point of their lead and lose it in the last two minutes.
And although the Warriors ultimately won the game, there were no losers—not really.
Sometimes a win looks like a loss, but make no mistake: that game was a testament of two teams who pushed each other to new levels of performance. And that is a win in my book.
Here is a key lesson I took away from this game and the post interviews:
Winning is a mind game first.
Get in the game (winning is for players not spectators.)
Show up to win (believe you will win. Visualize it.)
Take the shots (be willing to embrace risk.)
Involve your team (winning happens in community.)
Ignore the clock (every second counts.)
A win looks like a loss sometimes (you make it a win when you decide it is.)
I have learned that winning in business and in life is not that difficult. It’s not a mystery. It’s predictable.
In fact, winning today is simpler than you think. Why?
Because MOST people …
Don’t get in the game (they much rather sit on the sidelines)
Don’t show up to win (they show up afraid… of losing)
Don’t take the shots (risk makes them anxious)
Don’t involve a team (they’re solo players)
Think time’s ran out (they quit before the clock runs out)
Believe they’ve lost already (don’t see the wins in the apparent loses)
If you are still reading this post, you are NOT “most people.” You like to win. You are a winner.