Well, after all the Thanksgiving activities, we got to go back into some sports!

Well, after all the Thanksgiving activities, we got to go back into some sports! Both the girls and boys basketball teams played in local Tip Off Tournaments, hockey is happening, and we are in full winter swing. I can feel it’s going to be a good season.

However, while in the midst of all of that I had two weeks full of awards banquets that I was fortunate enough to attend. I don’t know what it is about achievement, but dog gone it, it’s motivating to see people recognized for getting the job done or going the extra mile. The thing that really sticks out to me is every athlete who won a coach’s award or an MVP award brought enthusiasm to the field, court or course they were on.

What is enthusiasm? The dictionary defines enthusiasm as “strong excitement about something: a strong feeling of active interest in something that you like or enjoy.” The reason we pay attention to enthusiasm in sports or leadership of any kind is simple.

Enthusiasm is infectious. It can take a team from down low and bring them to a higher level of playing. It rallies people behind an ideal, it pulls the best out of the individual for the betterment of the whole.

I got to see this firsthand at an Eagles girls hockey game. The game was tied up, and neither side had made any progress. Then, bam! Ali Beltz slapped in a goal, the audience went nuts, the players started yelling and throwing things. It was awesome to watch. And afterwards, the coach and Beltz both said the same thing, “We were frustrated, but full of hope.” They didn’t let enthusiasm die because it didn’t look good, and in the end they were rewarded.

We all know that person who still has energy after so many reps or when the game is almost over, but they are still going. To the pessimist, that person comes across as over the top, but when it matters, even the pessimist is made better in this person’s presence. Be enthusiastic about what it is you are doing. You give yourself a chance to meet the best version of yourself and it gets you through the parts of your task or activity that may not be your favorite. Exude enthusiasm.