Last week Alex Rodriguez became mitigated to a cheerleader when his team needed him most. A-Rod, as he’s known, is one of the best hitters of the past 20 years, yet his success occurred during the heart of the steroid era. He has dated Kate Hudson and Cameron Diaz, owns a Mercedes dealership, is a 12-time all-star, has made over 325 million dollars, and has won a MLB championship. Yet, I wonder what A-Rod sees when he looks in the mirror? Does he think, what if? Is he happy? He came into the Majors as a phenom, as the first pick of the draft, and was very successful early in his career. What if he stayed away from steroids? How much money and fame would he sacrifice to know that he played the game cleanly? How much does he strive for acceptance and desire to be well liked by his peers, the fans, and the media? We will probably never know the answers to these questions, but these are relevant questions for us everyday.
Similarly Lance Armstrong has not only dominated his sport, but has made an even bigger impact with his fight against cancer. Armstrong’s continued denial of taking performance enhancement drugs has caused many to question his integrity. At what point would Lance have sacrificed some of his success to avoid having to continuously lie to others and himself?
When is it appropriate to sacrifice integrity for greatness? How fulfilling is winning when you know you cheated to get there? Is your satisfaction solely due to the end result, or because of the journey along the way? 41% of National Lottery Winners in the UK continued to work despite their newfound financial windfall. Many lottery winners have committed suicide or figured out other ways to rid themselves of their wealth. What do you see when you look into the mirror?
Knowing who you are, your identity, and what you believe in is often what defines our self-satisfaction, which greatly impacts our happiness. And happiness counts.