Owners, whiners, and also-ran's
Attitude is everything...
My favorite sport to watch is Formula 1 and I have written about it before. This is a very expensive sport for both the manufacturers and the drivers, with very strong filters of who could make it into the sport. There are 10 teams with 2 cars each, which means there are only 20 spots each year for the drivers and it is a competitive world out there with several vying for the top spots.
When I watch the events, I see various types of drivers in this sport. I classify the drivers into three types - owners, whiners, and also-rans. In each team the two cars are nearly identical, so the difference in the performance of a particular car is often the driver.
Some teams like Haas and Williams are at the bottom of the performance sport, so these drivers are what I classify as the also-rans. However, in Williams, young Russell drives so spectacularly and is often ahead in the standings than other drivers with much better cars. There is an enormous difference in the attitude of the driver that can be seen. This is what I call the “Ownership” pattern.
Owners own their problem. Irrespective of whatever happened in the race, these drivers say that they could have done better, tried better, and improved what they did. Their attitude sets them apart. Examples of these include Russell (Williams one of the bottom-end teams), Hamilton (Mercedes the top team in the sport), Max, and Perez (Red Bull a contender for the top), Lando and Riccardo (McLaren), LeClerc, and Sainz (Ferrari with an average performing car this year), and so on.
And then there are the whiners. The top team in Mercedes has one. Valteri Bottas. The Aston-Martin team has one. Sebastian Vettel. A past champion of four years last winning in 2013 and still living in the past glory. These guys moan and groan every race. When something goes right it is them. When anything goes wrong - it is the car, the team, the car’s tuning, the track, the tires, the run strategy, the competing car driver’s errors, etc., etc. It is never ever them who is responsible. And it is fun to watch.
Clearly, some teams have both drivers who are great owners and some teams have one of each, and some of them with no luck at all. Irrespective of car performance, one could see where ownership is higher the team gets more points or higher positions than teams with less ownership reflected in the driver’s attitude.
Extending this concept, I often wonder about myself on whether I am an owner, whiner, or an also-ran. There are things in life that I absolutely own and execute. There are things where I whine a lot. (You must ask my wife. I would not live with myself and yet she does) and in several things, I am an also-ran.
I guess the trick to a successful life is to figure out a way to see how one could be an owner to more and more things - especially the important valuable things - the things that count. The shift from being a whiner or an also-ran determines possibly how proactive one’s life is. And that change starts with possibly saying “It’s me. I am at fault. It is always me!”
It is the attitude that matters.