Monday, January 5, 2009

Make Time for Competition!

Recently a parent commented about a concern that their child was too(!) competitive. I took this with a smile, reflecting on how so many parents look out for their children in both aggressive and non-aggressive fashions. Competitive characteristics are shared most commonly by the most successful people in the world. Incentives for success are so appealling and luxurious that the opportunities our children have today to hone their "type A" personality or winning skills are plenty.
Unfortunately most parents look only to sports programs for developing 'winning' skills. Of course sport requires physical coordination and often team work - so it must not be overlooked. I'm happy to hear more often today about math olympiads and music program concerts and other cultural/academic outlets in addition to chess. Each of these contributes so much more to the mindful success of a well rounded student.
Competitions, and events such as music concerts that culminate in a test of one's development, prowess in handling stress in the preparation for such an event, and the opportunities to prove oneself are priceless and unfortunately far too few.

'Have you no ambition, Master Po?'
'Only one. Five years hence, it is my wish to make a pilgrimage to the Forbidden City. It is a place where even priests receive no special status. There in the Temple of Heaven, will be a festival The full moon of May. It will be the thirteenth day of the fifth month in the Year of the Dog.'
'That is not such a great ambition.'
'But it is ambition, nonetheless. Who among us is without flaw?'" -Master Po

Setting aside time in our calendar for competition or such an event on a regular basis defines our everyday focus and study.
-John MacArthur

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