There is a beautiful Cherokee tale, which I remember when I get angry if something does not go as I expected or wanted and I feel like a victim of that situation. Well, the story is about a grandfather who is talking to his grandson because he is sad and angry that someone has stolen a knife he had just bought from his hard work helping his father selling the fur they had collected. The grandfather tells the grandson that he does not like injustices either, but by feeling hatred we harm ourselves. He then tells him a story about a fight of two wolves going on inside him. One of the wolves is angry, arrogant, greedy, and has resentment. The other wolf is cheerful, humble, generous, and kind.
The grandfather concludes that the same struggle occurs in each and every one of us; and then the grandson asks him: “And… who is the wolf that wins?”
To which the Cherokee grandfather responds: “The one you feed.”
From this little story we can draw many lessons, for example about different values. For me, one of the lessons I like the most is that it teaches us that we can always choose our attitude on the situations happening to us that we do not like; Although sometimes we don’t realize it and prefer to complain or blame someone about how we feel. So, in the end, what we feel depends on how we think about our circumstances.
In sport, from time to time we are going to find ourselves in difficult situations (e.g., injuries, losing games, not being chosen for the team), but to perform exceptionally we have to take responsibility for our actions maintaining a positive attitude.
It is up to us to choose which wolf we feed. If we feed the arrogant wolf, it will make us feel victims of the situations, and it will take away that ability to choose our attitude. On the other hand, if we feed the serene, kind and confident wolf, we will become stronger.
Photograph by Ash Goldsborough on Unsplash