Hard work vs determination

Grace has a favorite saying. “Hard work beats talent when talent quits working hard”. She had applied this to her efforts in practice this year and she is almost there. In other words, her hard work is paying off and she is catching up with the “out of the box” talent. Talent doesn’t even have to quit working hard, that is on them but hard work always pays off.

Sarah has decided to shake things up a bit and throw a third factor into the mix. She is driven by sheer determination. It hasn’t worked for her in the pool, at least not yet. But I suspect it will.

If you have even been around a determined child you know what we are up against. Determined in other terms is strong willed, focused, egocentric, relentless, bull headed and pain in the ass. Mostly that. They won’t be told they can’t. It isn’t even a thought that registers.

Sarah takes on everything with the determination that she will win. And she won’t give up until she does. If she wants to score a goal in soccer she will stay in the game and on the ball until she does. Give her a rock climbing wall and she will keep trying until sweat drips from her elbow and her shoulders are screaming from the pain. She WILL get to the top and ring that bell. Mechanical bull? First time was a challenge but then she she watched me try it, learned from my mistakes and hopped back on. She had no problem grabbing the bull by the horns.

Once we were at the beach and they had a street carnival. One of the games was a wobbly rope bridge that twisted and turned. If you reached the top and rang a bell you won a prize. Sarah wanted a skateboard. We bought five chances Sarah went first, fell a third of the way up. Watched her sisters fall, followed by me. One chance was left and quite honestly, none of us wanted to do it again. Sarah had watched and in her head mastered the course. She scurried to the top, rang the bell and took home her skateboard. They told me she was the third winner they had that summer. This was in August.

She doesn’t give up. I hope she can figure out how to make this work for her in the pool, where you don’t get the chance to learn from your mistakes in the first race and try again in ten minutes. I admire her. She also scares the shit out of me.

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