People always say to “think outside of the box.” I couldn’t agree more! However, I like to do my out of the box thinking, inside of the box. But how can this work? Well it works just fine when your box is mapped out with white lines, about 120 yards and long and 80 yards wide. I think everybody has his or her own place like this; somewhere that allows you to feel completely in control and comfortable taking risks. I think it’s safe to say that the soccer field is the box (or rectangle, if we’re getting technical) where everything in my life makes sense. I don’t even necessarily have to be on the field for it to work, just thinking about soccer or discussing it allows me to tap into this creative part of my mind that allows me to release my inhibitions.
In a strange way, the game of soccer (to me at least) is a lot like life: with a goal that you have to reach, and a plan in order to reach it (or not, just go with the flow!). There are most likely some obstacles along the way and problems you will have to solve, either by yourself or with others. At times things won’t go your way, other times they will. Maybe there are some people who will do everything in their power to turn things against you, but you have to keep fighting anyway (sounds a lot like a bad ref). Sometimes you will give it everything you have and come up short, and other times you will succeed. You will most likely learn something every time you try, whether it is a new lesson, skill, or something else that is completely intangible. And there is always another game.
I have come to the realization that my life outside of this box of mine is really just the same as the one inside of it. When I have viewed the obstacles I come across in my life the same way as I view the ones that occur in my soccer world, it was so much easier for me to draw parallels to the problems and solutions. Finally, a way to make sense of it all!
I started thinking about all of this after an injury, just a minor set back if you will. I thought about the timing of the injury and what it meant for my team, for myself, and for the rest of the season. It would be so easy for me to allow my emotions to take over the logical side of my brain at a time like this, wouldn’t it?
That’s when I realized, that when I find myself straying away from my box, I really just need to look inside of it for the answers. I know it sounds a bit complicated. How could thinking outside of the box really just be thinking inside of it? Have you ever searched for your sunglasses for 20 minutes and then come to realize that they’ve been sitting on your head the whole time? Same concept. Sometimes the solutions we are hoping to find are really quite obvious. We don’t always need to complicate things and stray from what we know best in order to come up with answers. Most of the time the right inspiration that we seek lies within the obvious area that makes us feel the most complete.
The next time someone tells me to think outside of the box, I’m going to jump inside of mine! Since when do I listen to what everyone else says anyway?! Surely it’s important to be open to new ideas and concepts, but at the end of it all we always go back to the one thing that makes us feel comfortable and empowered. Use this place to find your inspiration! And then, when you do, share your inspiration and make the world jealous that they didn’t think of it first. 😉
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