Unless you have been under a rock or are not a basketball fan, there is no way to miss the Jeremy Lin story over the last week. Jeremy is a player that was not recruited by Division I schools after a stellar high school career and was not drafted after an above average college career at Harvard. Granted Harvard and the Ivy league are not known for churning out basketball stars, but Lin’s basketball accomplishes at Harvard were admirable none the least. His professional career has had him bounce around to several teams with very limited playing time. Until he got his chance.
This is where I take interest in the Lin story because besides what happened to him before he got the opportunity to play, the most important thing is that he was prepared when the opportunity presented itself. Some might even say the opportunity presented itself because Lin continued to prepare and improve.
So many times in life people expect an opportunity that they are either not prepared for or have not put in the work necessary to get the opportunity. When that happens, there is no one to blame but yourself. How well you prepare is not determined by anything except the steps you take on a daily basis to achieve the goals you desire. Over the last several years, Lin has probably shot tens of thousands of jump shots, improved his fundamentals, and played the game he loves with the passion that it requires for the one day when he might get a chance. If a few injuries had not occurred on the Knicks, he still would not have had a chance to play. That really doesn’t matter. It was beyond his control is he received an opportunity. The only thing he could control was how prepared he was when the time came.
I’m not sure that Lin’s skills will lead to a long-term successful career in the NBA or if this is just a short-term span of great play and media affection, but I’m rooting for the former. There are a lot of lessons to be taken away from the attitude and approach the Lin has used to be prepared to play basketball. Those same attributes typically lead to success in any field when applied correctly.
Will you be prepared when the opportunity presents itself? Will your hard work and attitude create the type of opportunity you desire? Only you can answer that.