Do you ever feel like a fraud, that at any moment your success will be exposed as just dumb luck? Perhaps you feel that you’ve tricked the world into thinking your smarter than you really are and that your latest pay rise or promotion was obtained by deception.
Steven Bradbury might easily have dismissed his gold medal success as dumb luck. After all, as the lead skaters came into the final corner, Bradbury was a distant last. And as the four racers in front of him fell over in sight of the line, Bradbury calmly skated to a gold medal and a place in Australian folklore.
But to dismiss his victory as underserved because of the way it occurred would’ve dismissed that he’d competed in three previous Olympic games. It would’ve dismissed the hours, days and years of training and preparation that got him to the Salt Lake games. And it would’ve dismissed that he’d made it to the final and that he deserved his place on the starting line.
Appearances aside, Bradbury’s victory was deserved. Might he have liked to win it through being fitter, faster and stronger than the others? Probably. But the fact is, they fell over. He didn’t. His victory was deserved because he crossed the line first not because he’d skated faster.
In sport, winners are determined by who crossed the line first, not by who trained the hardest or who deserved it more.
So, when you have a win don’t dismiss it as a fluke, as dumb luck or as the work of someone else. Calmly accept the acclaim and recognise your role in what you’ve achieved.