Perhaps he’d tossed the soundtrack of ‘Chariots of Fire’ into the CD player (does INDY even allow them?) and was celebrating a slow-motion, arm-raising, first-place finish in his own mind…but alas, his chariot had a different outcome.
On Saturday afternoon, in the final corner of the Indy 500, rookie driver JR Hildebrand may have already been savoring the flavor of that victory bottle of milk…when everything suddenly went sour.
In full-view of the finish line, he made a split-second decision to pass a slower driver…and demolished his car as he crashed into the wall.
I can think of 1.5 million reasons why that was a bad choice.
Although Hildebrand still scored 2nd place, that is how many dollars his payday lost…in a split-second.
Sadly, we see this happening over and over in sports, in business, and in our own lives.
Even though the money is not yet in the bank, we may prematurely begin the celebration, make a mental or emotional error, and wind up in a smoking heap while someone else snatches our prize.
In this case, it was Dan Wheldon, who entered the season without a job. Basically a no-name guy who, on this day, did just ONE thing better than Hildebrand: he successfully navigated all 799 corners of the race to cross the finish line for a 2.6 million dollar payday.
One bad decision = 1.5 million dollar ‘learning experience’.
Is there a race you are running right now?
In your career? In your family life? In a relationship?
My advice is this: keep your eyes on the road, as well as the prize. Drive when it’s time to drive, then celebrate when it’s time to celebrate.
The safest way to win is to concentrate until that finish line is in your rear-view mirror…THEN celebrate with a victory swig of your favorite cool refreshment!
Gentlemen (and ladies)…welcome to race day!
To learn more about Steve Gamlin’s presentations, events and educational materials, please visit http://JigsawConsulting.org or http://InspiredBySteve.com