Thursday, January 27, 2011

Training Confidence & Chasing Rainbows

When asked last week by a group of students during a club meeting, "What makes a good leader?" I came up with several quick, deserving responses but was told to pick only five. As I pondered in front of the once-stark whiteboard, but now covered in colorful responses of various handwriting and font, I repeatedly got stuck on one subtle word.


After the activity of displaying and explaining words, we were all asked to choose one word that MOST represents a leader, and for whatever reason, out of all of the passions and responsibilities and visions and motivations... I chose confidence.

Now, I didn't or do not necessarily think that it is truly confidence that is most crucial when painting the picture of a good leader, but I DO think that it is the characteristic that I recurrently possess the fewest molecules for.

I don't recall where my disengagement with confidence started, I just know that it is deeply rooted keeping me from moving forward...or moving in any direction for that matter. However, in the last six months I have experienced many blue-flamed successes-- the ones that burn low and subtle, but extremely hot and lasting. These experiences have brought me to acknowledge both aspects about my physical willingness as well as my strong mental stature. In fact, sitting here, writing THIS feels sort of funny.

Having never been the first--or even the last or any in between--to offer up praise for my own accomplishments, this sudden awareness to do so is breathtaking. And not breathtaking, in an, "Oh! How beautiful" sort of way, but rather more like, "Yikes, I could just crawl out of my own skin from the discomfort of it all!"

But yet, I pull through. I pull forward and I tell myself that it is alright to be proud, and to share that with others. This pride and contentment that I feel makes a rainbow to and from my heart, glowing straight above in vertical distance, all the way beyond the stars. This rainbow is made up of first place races and difficult training sets. It is made of local sports awards and news features. It is made of proving that the power of the human effort is unyielding. It is made of the creation of hope and motivation in others. Able to be viewed by all, yet completely uncatchable, this rainbow is all my own.

The confidence that I presented on the whiteboard last week, may still be something of longing; however, at this point I feel far less frightened for it and far more aware of its existence.

The rainbow doesn't have to wait for rain to create majestic color spectra overhead; it just needs enough room to project those profoundly uplifting moments and emotions of the heart.

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