First, let me point out that others have written of lessons to be garnered from the show, ranging from 5 CUSTOMER SERVICE LESSONS FROM AMERICAN NINJA WARRIOR to Lessons for Entrepreneurs From 'Ninja Warrior' Training to What American Ninja Warrior Can Teach Us About Business and Life, Part 1, What American Ninja Warrior Can Teach Us About Business and Life, Part 2 and What American Ninja Warrior Can Teach Us About Business and Life, Part 3.
Second, I am a believer that testing one's mental and physical limits is vital - at any age, adjusting for the things life has thrown at you.
This brings me to the Warrior Games, perhaps less flashy that ANW, but which carries many of the same messages:
- You can't win if you don't try.
- Trying is winning.
- Effort is everything.
- Everyone will fail at some point.
- Failure is not the end, but the beginning.
- There are no losers - only differing degrees of success.
How do Vietnam POWs fit into this? Let me recommend, again, Lessons from the Hanoi Hilton: Six Characteristics of High-Performance Teams, in which men under the most dire of circumstances overcame their environment and pushed beyond limits to become more, much more than broken men. John McCain? Just one of the winners that were forged in that place and time.
What to make of this? We may not be ninja warrior stuff but we all face the challenges of life. How each of us take on those challenges is . . . what makes heroes. Discouragement and doubt are dream killers but take heart from those who refuse to surrender to them - and begin to live bravely, one small step at a time toward your goals.