It is Olympic Games year and the build up to the 2016 Games in Rio has not been smooth. The Rio Olympics have experienced problems with construction, health issues such as the zika virus and water quality plus political unrest which all threatened to sabotage the 2016 Olympic Games.
During the week leading up to the Opening Ceremony many in the media were questioning whether the Games were still relevant and whether they were worth the money invested. Especially as the host nation who has an under-performing economy.
There was criticism of the preparations, drug use and of course even after the Games started more about drug cheats and even the diving pool turned GREEN overnight!
BUT ENOUGH OF THE NEGATIVITY I WANT TO FOCUS ON THE POSITIVES
I don’t usually watch the opening ceremony however, the television was on and I thought I would watch it while waiting for visitors to arrive.
I had only intended to see the first half an hour however as each country was announced I became more involved and inspired by the lack of politics and the overwhelming happiness and enthusiasm of the athletes and officials.
I especially loved the Refugee Team who received one of the loudest cheers as they entered the arena in the Opening Ceremony.
I’ve been watching the Games when time permits and have learned a few lessons that could be transferred to all of our lives.
10 lessons we can all learn from the Rio Olympics
1. Anything worthwhile takes commitment
Years of training and commitment is required from all of the athletes to achieve their dream. Vigorous training programs, early morning starts, special diets not just for months but years of their lives to strive for the highest honour in their sport is a lesson in determination and commitment to us all.
A special mention to the parents of Olympians or all children involved in sports who provide the unconditional love and support and financial assistance to help their children achieve their dreams.
2. Your used by date is not necessarily when you think it is
What a legend Michael Phelps is! Making a comeback in his fifth Olympics at an age when swimmers have certainly retired. His strength of mind and body has given him 22 gold medals to date and the record of having one the same event at four Olympics in a row.
I actually have to admit that in the past I thought he was arrogant however that is not the case. He is an athlete who has made mistakes but shows that you can come back and achieve more than is expected of you. I was moved seeing him on the dais with his family in the crowd and genuine tears of joy in his eyes.
Another competitor in the Cycling, Kristin Armstrong, turned 43 during the games, has a 5 year old son and works full time, still managed to win Gold at three consecutive games.
3. Borders can be broken
Watching the Opening Ceremony and the camaraderie between the participants and team officials proves that borders can be broken. Politics and the angry world we live in are pushed aside we can be united as one. We need to remember this once the Games have finished and life returns to normal.
4. How to be a winner
I love watching winners who are humble. It is easy to win – we get what we want. But, being a Winner is not that easy sometimes. True winners know how to behave and don’t always believe their own publicity.
5. How to handle defeat
It takes strength of character to accept defeat. I feel for the athletes who have come into the Games with great expectation on their shoulders. They have been performing well and perhaps have set records in previous meets. However, things can go wrong and I truly admire those who have been defeated and feel devastated but still make themselves available to the press after the race. They don’t make excuses or say it isn’t fair. They just accept the bitter taste of defeat and move on – no matter how difficult that might be.
6. Just do your best
Many of the participants won’t place and some come so agonisingly close to winning a medal. We can’t always win but as long as we know we have tried our best nothing more can be asked of us.
7. You CAN achieve your dream
The Fiji Rugby Sevens team won a gold medal and made history. It was the first medal of any colour that Fiji has ever won at the Olympic Games. After 14 Olympics Fiji has finally won a medal! The Fijian Government declared two days of public holidays – one to watch the final and one to celebrate the win. The joy on the faces of not only the players but the spectators and the whole of Fiji was so touching. Dreams can be achieved.
8. You can overcome obstacles
The Olympic Refugee Team prove that you can overcome obstacles in life and are a great inspiration to us all. 10 refugees from 4 different countries have come together to form a team and prove that with courage and belief you can conquer whatever life throws at you. They are truly role models to us all.
9. Life can be a roller coaster ride
There are so many emotions that we see when watching the Olympics. The highest of highs to the lows. An Australian cyclist had a bad fall in during training at the velodrome and after years of training may not even make her event.
10. Nothing in life is certain
Unfortunately, life doesn’t always go to plan and nothing is certain. I was watching the 100 metres Women’s Swimming Final and it featured two Australian sisters Bronte and Cate Campbell.
Of course, as an Australian I was eager to see how they would perform and in fact they were expected to both place. Cate had set a world record in the event only a month ago. I was listening to the Australian commentators building up their chances and thought ‘wow! what pressure these swimmers are under to perform’. Neither placed and it was a heartbreaking moment for them both.
There has been plenty of negative commentary about the Olympics and the host nation, however, when it all starts the negativity is pushed aside and we can enjoy two weeks of positive and inspirational moments.
I do have one question though – how do they keep those skimpy bottoms and tops from revealing all when they are playing beach volleyball?