As we are getting older, the responsibility and pressure is increasing as well. I subconsciously knew this fact, but I truly felt and experienced it this August at Hope College. When I was 15 years old, I started a new chapter of my life by leaving the Czech Republic, my home country, and going to college preparatory school in Colorado. The biggest challenge I faced was adapting to the American way of life, thinking, and culture. Actually, in school, I had a lot of room for mistakes, because only by doing mistakes and learning from them I was improving. In Colorado’s college preparatory school, excellence was not the main focus. Work ethic, honesty, doing mistakes and learning from them and becoming to one’s full potential was the major focus in my school at Colorado.
The years flew by quickly and suddenly I am a freshman at college, where the excellence is the main focus and room for mistakes is excessively low. The expectations of me as a student at Hope College are completely inverse, compare to student expectations at my old school in Colorado. Students who want to go to top medical school they need to have about 3.7+ GPA (Grade Point Average) out of 4.0. Potential law students are aiming for similarly high GPA. Basically, anyone who wants to continue to a high quality graduate school needs to have really high GPA. With the increasing demand for excellence and the room for error decreasing, many students and people forget about one aspect of life that makes people successful and happy at the same time. A lot of people eliminate humor out off their life.
By any means, I do not want to preach anyone about what does it take to become successful and happy because I have not achieved anything in life so far, but based of meeting multiple people who reached top of their respective fields, I can observed that humor is a big part of their successes.
Now, please watch this 3-minute video before reading the next part. Look at the the score of the match to understand the importance of the point.
Just smile it off! 🙂
How simple is that ?
Tomáš Berdych does it and he ends up beating Roger Federer, arguable the best tennis player who has ever played the game. What if Berdych would lose his mind? Would it win the match for him? No. What if Berdych would start to swear at the referee? He would not probably lose the match, but also most likely he would get fined as well. The point of Tomáš Berdych example is not to debate what would happen if he would not smile in extremely hard situation against the best player in the World, but to show how humor can be such a helpful tool in very difficult life moments.
Definitely, it does not mean to take life lightly and laugh at every difficult challenge that we face. But on the other side, we are only people and we do not have control over everything. So when life does not go the way we want it or life put us in a hard situation, humor is a great way to overcome such an obstacles. No one plans to be in a difficult life situations, but many time we find ourselves there and there is nothing we can do with it, then to smile and keep moving forward by focusing on things that we can control.
Like Tomáš Berdych does it in the video. He smiles off hard situation that he can not control and he focuses on playing well after that difficult moment because that is in his control. Eventually, he wins the match by outplaying Federer after the difficult moment and mainly by getting over a tough situation that he does not expect.
“A sense of humor is part of the art of leadership, of getting along with people, of getting things done.”
– Dwight D. Eisenhower
P.S.: “Under Pressure” by Queen is an excellent song to lose some pressure.
Citations: “Google.” Google. Google, n.d. Web. 04 Nov. 2015.