Beijing Arrival and Shanghai Follow-Up

05 May 2012 Mav In News, Training, Travel

I didn’t think it was possible, seeing the sky on a regular basis due to the thick coverage of smog but I was definitely judging the book (China) by it’s cover (Shanghai) as Beijing is clear, smokin’ hot, and from the small area I can see from my hotel window, looks quite nice.

We’ll be heading out shortly to adventure and most likely hit the courts later on once the heat diminishes.

Before we head out I wanted to thank everyone for their positive, encouraging words following my last blog. It’s always helpful and humbling to hear such kind words spoken and written from friends, fans, and family. Of course I was bummed about the outcome of Shanghai but I think I failed in expressing just how optimistic my thoughts were about Shanghai’s performance, and, are heading into Beijing.

We’re playing quite consistent, and Shanghai being just our seventh FIVB event, makes me extremely happy with our performance and progress thus far. Keep in mind we do expect to qualify and are in no way satisfied with the results we’ve started with but we are able to build with the positive things and look forward to another opportunity here in Beijing.

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Coaches always say you learn more from a loss then you do from a win, and I agree. It’s a great opportunity for reflection, if you can do so without a clouded mind. I am extremely critical of myself, my game, and expect a, what some would think, unattainable level of play on a consistent basis. I’m a firm believer in setting realistic, yet difficult to obtain goals and have done so for my entire volleyball career. This sometimes yields a high level of disappointment when I fail to achieve said goals but at the same time it’s what continues to drive me, and to be resilient.

One of the most important lessons I’ve learned to date came from, what I thought at the time to be an unlikely source. When I first started playing beach volleyball on kits beach I was extremely excited to win the consolation final – and that was due to my partner carrying me to the win. When I finally won my first beach tournament, years later, a guy who had bowed out on the consolation side came to me after the players meeting and said this:

“I’m not the best player out here but if I had one thing to pass on to you it’s to listen to everyone’s advice, without prejudice, and try it for yourself. Learn from everyone and you’ll be ahead of the game.”

Back then, I did just that, and I truly believe that played a big part in my progression in the sport. To be honest, I’ve forgotten that over the past couple years but had recently revisited this piece of advice. The reason I’m sharing this with you is because the few people who have taken the time to send me personal messages the past few days have only made that lesson ring truer and louder. It’s a good lesson that many up and coming youth can take for themselves and hopefully implement in their own athletic careers and lives.

There are many things one can learn from a loss. There are even more things one can learn from listening. It’s all tough to do but then again, anything of significance (in any aspect of life) will be tough.

Time to hit the town!

-Mav