Why does this matter?
During this month’s episode of The Growth Habits Show, Larry King interviewed Meryl Davis and Charlie White, the U.S. Ice Dancing pair who were the first Americans to win the Gold Medal at the 2014 Sochi Olympics.
Meryl Davis and Charlie White teamed up in 1997, at the age of 8, when they were both skating at a local skating club Detroit rink in Michigan. Charlie needed a partner that was similar in stature and Meryl was chosen. Neither dreamed they would be ice dancers as they both enjoyed skating and the artistry that they could create.
Today, they are the longest partnership in U.S. Ice Dance teams celebrating many accomplishments such as 6-time U.S. Champions, 2 World Championships, and 5-time Grand Prix Final Champions.
While I was watching the interview, I could not stop writing all of the golden nugget take-a-ways that they continued to share and felt like they were talking right to me. It was refreshing to hear reminders of how struggle and sacrifice helps to move you forward in your goals and that with hard work you gain confidence as well as it is ok to not be perfect. I immediately wanted to share this interview with my 10-year-old daughter.
My daughter is a beautiful dancer (I know all moms say that about their kids achievements!) but she gets so frustrated and defeated when she tries a new dance move and it doesn’t come easy. She compares herself to others in her dance company and when someone is better, her self-esteem is shredded and she gets discouraged. She cannot handle when things are “hard” or “difficult”. I have tried to guide her to want to practice outside of class and she has resources at home to practice the new skills but I feel like I am always telling her to practice; which doesn’t ever seem to work!
Sundays are family time in our house since every other day is tied up with work, camps and other activities. What a perfect time to have my daughter watch the interview! As I was starting to get the interview ready, my daughter turned to me and said:
Daughter: “Is this just another lecture on how I need to practice?”
Me: “Nope, I want you to hear it from someone other than me.” Do you know who Meryl Davis and Charlie White are?”
Daughter: “Kind of. I think they are ice dancers”.
Me: “That is correct, They are the first Americans to win a U.S. Gold Medal in Ice Dancing” (and started to play their long program from the 2014 Sochi Olympics on Youtube).
Daughter: “But, I am not an ice dancer”
Me: “I know, but please listen to the Growth Habit’s interview and tell me what you take away from it”.
Yup! Can any other parents relate to that conversation? So like any good parent I told her, “You don’t have to watch it if you don’t want to!” Of course, she sat and watched it!
After 30 minutes my daughter appeared:
Daughter: “I finished watching it”.
Me: “Really? What are some things that you learned from watching it?”
Daughter: “I always need to have a positive attitude and to work hard and be ok with my progress. I don’t have to be perfect and I have to really try not to compare myself to anyone else. Practice and work hard.”
How does this help you?
You may be wondering like my daughter, “How is this interview going to help me; I am not an ice dancer or an Olympic Athlete?” You are right but in the spirit of our lives their struggles and sacrifice can relate to anyone who wants something more in their life.
I don’t want to give away all of the golden nuggets in the interview so I will only share one of the many I needed to hear from Meryl and Charlie!
“Patience is important. All experience help lead you to understanding yourself better which ultimately is going to help you have the most success.” – Charlie White
“I am not the most patient person and I am a perfectionist who wants to do everything perfect the first time.” (I wonder where my daughter gets it from)! “I don’t like to fail. I needed to hear what Charlie said that all experiences help you become better.”
Sometimes we forget. We feel like we are an island where we are the only ones experiencing difficult times or failures. But we aren’t. Everyone goes through them. The difference is how we choose to overcome them.