Composure

Alfred Lua / Written on 01 August 2021

British triathlete Georgia Taylor-Brown was at the front, in the lead pack, for the bike leg of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics triathlon race.

As luck would have it, on the final lap of the bike course, her tire punctured.

She rode on with a flat tire but couldn't keep up. That created a 22-second gap from the lead pack when she started her run.

During the run, she overtook two other triathletes to finish second. About a minute behind gold medalist Flora Duffy. In a two-hour race.

Many people, including me, were thinking, "if only she didn't have that puncture, she might have a chance at the gold medal."

But something the commentator said during the race caught my attention.

She [Taylor-Brown] was the first to accept that.

She could have beaten herself up for the puncture or get frustrated about her bad luck. As an athlete myself, I know how easy it is to lose my composure due to such incidents and to throw away the race. When I lose the mental game, I lose the actual game.

But she accepted it for what it is and kept going. In an interview after the race, Taylor-Brown said she panicked but tried to keep her cool, not rush through transition, and get everything right.

And she did, walking away with a silver medal at her first Olympics.

But that is not all.

Just 12 weeks ago, she had a leg injury that left her on crutches. She almost lost the chance to represent Great Britain and had to prove she was fit enough to compete a week before flying out to Japan. The frustration and stress would have broken most people down, especially since it is the Olympics.

But not Taylor-Brown.

I got a stress response in my femur 12 weeks ago. So that was a bit of a shock... It's not perfect, it's not what I wanted. It's not what anyone would want, but I think I got myself into a really good position and I was as fit as I could have been on that start-line today with the circumstances that I faced.

Amazing. She very well deserves the Olympic silver medal!

She also went on to win the gold medal for the mixed relay yesterday.

Whether it's marketing or running a business, it's easy when everything is going well. When traffic, signups, and revenue are growing, we feel happy. We feel confident about what we are doing. We are sure what we do is right.

But whenever the numbers look bad, and they would, we start to doubt everything we are doing. We lose confidence. Worse, it's a downward spiral if we let that affect our work.

Of course, reality has a lot of nuances. Maybe the numbers are telling us something. Maybe we actually need to change what we have been doing.

But understanding our psychology and maintaining our composure is also important. Don't panic and throw everything out of the window just because the numbers started to dip. It could be a macro factor that is affecting the entire ecosystem you are in. Or perhaps your plan just needs some more time to show results.

Keep your cool, not rush through things, and get everything right.

You got this! :)

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