It's not over til it's over

how to play the game of life

I'm not a massive football fan.

Admitting to such a thing in the land of the New England Patriots has garnered me several side-ways glances and incredulous looks. It might even constitute a sacrilege in these parts.

But there ya go.

Suffice to say, I did not watch the Super Bowl game on Sunday which pitted the New England Patriots against the Atlanta Falcons (I did youtube Lady Gaga's halftime show, however. It was fantastic!)

In any event, the following morning, the radio news shows were abuzz with talk of the game and the phenomenal comeback that Tom Brady and his fellow teammates mounted to close the 25 point deficit beginning in the third quarter (translation: the Patriots were behind by 25 points near the end of the game!)

What captured my attention, however, was the sheer audacity and focused determination expressed by both the New England players and their fans; they never stopped believing that a win was possible.

One commentator attributed their victory to the Patriot's well worn mantra:

"Everyone do your job."

As he explained to his fellow 'eye-rolling' commentators, the Patriots believe that if everyone within their organization - from the managers to the coaches to the players- remain focused on their job..success is inevitable. 

It was the words of one particular Patriots player that struck me most profoundly, however. 

In responding to a reporter's astonishment at their 'come from behind' win, the player explained,

"We never stopped believing.

We could see it in each other's eyes.

We just had to keep working.

Keep competing.

Stay in the game.

No matter the outcome."

Did you catch that?

"No matter the outcome."

Ultimately, to this player...to this team...winning was the cherry on top of the sundae...but the true treat was in staying in the game and giving it everything you've got.

It brings to mind the words of legendary basketball coach John Wooden who said:

“You can lose when you outscore somebody in a game.

And you can win when you’re outscored.”

And that is the key, non?

Stay in the game. 

Stay focused. 

Keep playing.

And so it is with life.

Stay in the game.

Stay focused.

Keep playing...

win or lose...

Play...full out and fully in.

Take it from our beloved Patriots,

It's never over til it's over.