Today I think I began to comprehend the true importance of goals, of having something to work towards, of inspiration.

I’m a cox, so in my squad this means I’m a bit of an in-between to the coach and my squad. And one of the struggles recently has been a lack of aspiration. The girls were asked to set themselves goals for rowing, which mostly they did. Only problem was, the goal was to get to a point in the squad, but not to achieve anything with that, not to medal, not to qualify for a certain race. So what happens when there are eight girls who’ve achieved their goal, and only one wants more from it?

Rowing isn’t an easy sport, and it is pretty tough to get through winter training, through ergos where you have to push yourself to the point of throwing up, through the physical and emotional torture (before you wonder what kind of sport is it, it is rewarding), and anyone who can without goals is inhuman. When you are at the point of giving up, you need a reason to continue.

And we solved this struggle the other day, as a squad. But only today did I set myself any specific goals. When I’m wondering whether to quit, whether the sacrifices are worth it, I hope I have the answer now. Because I want to get to Worlds. My coach says it’s feasible, so the first step is to believe him.

Because that’s another thing about goals, they can make you or brake you. Confidence is pretty low in my generation, and having a goal is giving me that little bit more confidence to push myself and take the risk. But it doesn’t always work. So if it goes wrong, you have to keep sight of that goal and try again. And that is so hard.

Even if your goal is just to make it out of bed every day, I applaud you. Goals give back that little spark you lose when you lose a loved one. The goal to just get out of bed in the morning is the only reason I’m here now.

I’ve lost two grandparents, and although I will never get over them, that goal kept me going when I didn’t know what to do. See where that’s gotten me? I now have a goal to compete at an international event. Maybe I’ll never achieve that, but I can try.

Never give up on your goals, because one day you’ll look back and be glad.




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