Motivator

Screen Shot 2016-04-25 at 3.35.32 PM

True story …

Back in the mid-1990s, I was going out with a co-worker at Sports Illustrated. It was nothing serious. She was a nice woman, we dated a few days, remain Facebook friends to this day.

Anyhow, one day she was sitting in my office. We were chatting about, oh, something, and a co-worker entered. He was a guy I strongly disliked at the time; someone who seemed to go out of his way to bestow misery upon others. “You know,” he said, “there are a lot of people here who have more talent than you do.”

Then he left.

I was stunned. And embarrassed. Promotions had recently been announced at the magazine, and I was bumped up from writer-reporter to staff writer. It was extraordinarily meaningful, and also the product of the hardest work of my life. I was coming in the majority of off days; always pitching stories; looking for things to write; hustling and scrapping and digging.

Anyhow, at the time I really hated the guy who spoke to me as such. But, ultimately, it was a gift. I replayed the moment hundreds of times; heard his voice over and over.

You know, there are a lot of people here who have more talent than you do …

You know, there are a lot of people here who have more talent than you do …

You know, there are a lot of people here who have more talent than you do …

It was the greatest motivator I ever had.

Leave a Reply