This weekend we were wowed by the USA Women’s Soccer victory over Japan and we continue to see Serena Williams making an amazing comeback in her tennis career. Carli Lloyd, at 32, led the American Women’s Soccer team to an amazing 5-2 victory. Abby Wambach, who is 35, shared a tender celebratory kiss with her wife which has been playing over and over again around the world as a tribute of the SCOTUS ruling legalizing same sex marriage across the United States. Serena Williams, 33, and Venus Williams, 35, displayed an amazing game of tennis while being the consummate sisters in awe of each other talents.
These women are clearly still champions in sports where youth wins. Hey, don’t count us out yet!! At 53, I feel like I am in my prime in my career, more confident and clear than I have been in 30 years. Many of my female peers in business feel the same way. We have used our experience to leverage success. Also, we have used our influence to speak out for what needs to be changed and learned how to remove toxicity from our workplaces. I love my career more than ever because I am stepping through doors that the female leaders before me have opened and I’m opening more doors for the youth behind me. That is really what keeps me going. And you know, business is a sport and sport is a business.
So what makes us all champions? We are putting ourselves out there, we are practicing our respective crafts every day, we are leading the charge to break records and ceilings. And we are putting our hearts and souls into what we touch. Champions are not just on TV or in the newspapers; champions are everyday people who take risks, save lives, make the world a little better each day. And we are never too old to be a champion of humanity.
I am always in awe hearing stories of inspirational women who have rocked the world with their magic yet it’s the folks I rub shoulders with every single day that teach me so much. When I focus on making my corner of the world better, that makes a difference to others. Anyone can be a champion simply by whom they “be” each day. Saying hello to one more stranger, letting the next car go ahead in traffic, shifting a bad attitude in the moment, carrying a bag for a senior citizen; it makes a difference. How does it make you a champion? Well, champions in sports will tell you that when they push themselves to hit one more ball, run a second faster, sit on the bench to let a rookie play, it makes them and their team stronger. As everyday folk, if we extend kindness a little more, help someone in need one more time we are practicing humanity. When humanity works, sports and business and everything thrives.
So as we watch this week’s Wimbledon finals and upcoming baseball All-Star game remember, we are all champions and those of us who have been playing the game of life longer than others, “don’t count us out yet”. The wealth of experience we have creates the champions of tomorrow.