Firstly, a big thank you to the students, parents and staff who have worked to keep many co-curricular sports, clubs and activities running throughout 2020.
Physical activity and the many benefits thereof, have been highlighted by the challenges this year. We cite the importance of resilience as a life skill to equip us to deal with adversity. I define resilience as a noun – meaning the act of rebounding.
I know it can be used so much that our students roll their eyes and switch off - perhaps at the mention of the word – but being resilient is so important, I believe.
Why do I hope we have instilled some strong frameworks through our sports and activities program?
I recently googled the ‘top ten world events since and including 2015’, when our current Year12 students began their CGGS journey. Nine out of 10 events were about violence and or destruction. One was a royal wedding of note!
My thoughts obviously went to all the great, uplifting things achieved since 2015 – why were they brushed aside? If I was googling to make myself better, rather than some practical research, I would have been pretty disappointed!
I believe we rebound by recognising the power we have within our control to determine our mood, our day, our outlook or response. Don’t hand that over to someone else.
We have so many good examples of sporting personalities, philosophies and faiths we can use to inspire and guide us. A really good place to start is by looking at the inspiration and love provided by those close to us.
Often, however, it is the high profile – for all the right reasons – role model, we have presented to us that we draw inspiration from. How exciting for us to savour the moment Kamala Harris as she became the first woman, and the first black and Asian American, to be Vice President-elect.
I loved the interview with Kim Ng last week – the first female General Manager of a major US sports franchise – in this case the Miami Marlins Baseball team – after five unsuccessful applications over many years. She believed her success recipe was simple: “by working as hard as I could.” In her case, since starting as an intern in 1990.
Peggy O’Neal beat her to that title here in Australia – as President of Richmond AFL. Sally Scales – the youngest elected Chair of the APY Lands Executive Board, speaks so passionately about being raised by strong women and her sense of responsibility as she is now the voice of the elders.
When you listen to interviews with these figures – the rebound/resilience factor is so clear. They talk about the idea that you actually have to experience that loss of a match or more important, hardship, to understand, perhaps appreciate more, the success and capacity to now make the difference you know you can produce. They also talk about why the ‘relational skills’ matter so much – to be present with people and to listen and value people – to be the positive influence in the team, workplace or family culture. By being prepared to take a risk – being prepared to put yourself forward knowing you may come second or never giving up until the final whistle helps you step out of your comfort zone – you rebound from the disappointments in life.
I hope you have some leisure or recreational time over the break.
Mr Peter Milligan