If you can’t play BIG don’t even trouble playing small.

by Darren Scherbain
These word of wisdom, that absolutely resonate to my core, had been handed to me from Jim.
Jim, a fellow Canadian and a near and expensive pal, grew up playing hockey in Wilcox, Saskatchewan. The Notre Dame Hounds, a hockey group, belonged to a catholic boarding college in the course of the Canadian Prairies. The Hounds produce exceptional hockey players but also empathetic, well-rounded, younger adults. Elements who has spent a winter on the Canadian prairies has had first hand experience with what it means when we say bone-chilling chilly, hope and resolve.
One day Jim is at school simply giving a class mate an actual hard time. Jim is selecting on this child and doing his finest to tear him down. Suddenly, Jim feels a hand on his shoulder.
Jim seems up and is greeted by a firm and fair look of disapproval.
“James”, the voice beckoned.
“Yes Father?” Jim replied.
“James”, the stern-yet-compassionate voice continued, “…if you can’t play BIG don’t even bother playing small.”
What precisely does it mean to play BIG? To stand for something!
If you don’t stand for one thing then you are constantly going to get blown round just like the sand within the wind. Swept up and scattered around until the subsequent rendezvous with wishing-it-were-different.
Playing BIG is making that shift from being ME-centred right into a collective WE-centred.
Ask any of the riders who stood face to face with every for the 700 kilometre Ride4Kids. What was their WHY?
Each WHY could be as various as the riders out on the street. Infused into every question is the bond of hope. Hope is something we all share.
Hope is the spark for enjoying BIG and the catalyst for placing one foot after another. One foot after the opposite; even when the torrential rain and wind are doing their greatest to test your resolve. After you wiped the sweat, rain, grit out of your eyes and survived the wobble, you realise that playing BIG is an inside job.
Playing BIG, hope, inspiration, and to some extent character and integrity, are all noble ideas. It’s one factor to idolise noble concepts, and they do make a cute little Instagram post. But that cute little publish isn’t going to validate your case when you’re requested to embrace wrestle as a way to growth.
It’s NEXT LEVEL to embrace and decide to the sheer physicality of putting your ass in the arena. The drained legs and self doubt are all part of the method and shouldn’t be interpreted as doing one thing faulty.
It’s straightforward to play BIG when it follows the perfect plan and all the pieces fit so conveniently in your neat and tidy little box.
And when you actually need to be taken seriously then throw in a “THIS ISN’T FAIR”.
Usually the one’s arguing for these virtuous ideas of justice and equity are left sitting on the curb watching everyone else ride on by.
There is a price to pay.

One of the inherent truths of playing BIG is that it doesn’t depart any wriggle room for any bull shit. You both play BIG and stand for something or you don’t.
One hundred and sixty kilometres doesn’t look that far on paper. A ‘century’ journey is held in high esteem within the cycling community. It’s what would be described as a Big Ride. The 160 kilometres that separated Krabi from Surat Thani was a testament to the ferocious dedication to play BIG and make a distinction. For lots of the riders out on the street that day it was their longest experience …EVER.
Teamwork.
Collaboration.
WE CENTRED.
That one hundred sixty kilometre ride was poetry in movement.
That evening we cemented our comradery over chilly pizza and tales from the road. The smiles on the faces and the look of accomplishment was inspiring. It was hope.
To Pay zero , sponsors, and everyone concerned with Ride4Kids, I tip my hat..

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