Each time the Olympics roll around I get inspired reading the bios of our Team USA members, learning about their quest for Olympic gold. The years of preparation and sacrifice they endure remind me what it takes to make our own dreams become reality. As each of us pursues our own life purpose we can learn a thing or two about career management from our Team USA brothers and sisters.
Olympic athletes learn to deal with adversity and develop the ability to bounce back no matter how difficult the circumstances. One Team USA member and gymnast, John Orozco, comes to mind immediately.
Orozco made his first Olympic appearance in 2012 after tearing his Achilles tendon two years earlier and having to work to help support his family following his father’s stroke. As you may recall, the men’s gymnastics team and Orozco suffered a heartbreaking loss in 2012 after a poor score on the pummel horse event; something Orozco surely would like to forget. Orozco, who was 19 years old at the time, thought it highly doubtful to envision a second Olympic quest.
Fast forward to 2016 and Orozco overcomes adversity once again. In June, 2015 a career threatening injury (a second Achilles tear) came just a few months after the death of his mother. Though devastated by the loss of his mom, he continued to train and rehab his torn tendon. Not one to give up, he did what most would think impossible at age 23. In June of this year, Orozco qualified at the trials and gained his second Olympic berth. He will be going to Rio.
We may not all be Olympic athletes but we too have courage and staying power to make it through the most difficult career challenges. Most, if not all of us, will experience a lay off, a job rejection or be passed over for promotion. In the greater scheme of life these are but small blips on the radar. Just ask John Orozco how he got through it and he will recite his mantra for you, “I didn’t come this far to only come this far”.
When career hurdles seem insurmountable keep in mind the destination and always remember to enjoy the journey. It’s the journey that keeps us all in the game, just like our Olympic athletes. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.