Keep Your Eyes on the Finish Line

You ever watch a sports game and find yourself constantly staring at the scoreboard when things get heightened. Things are tense, the score is close and your team is so close to making that comeback that you’ve been waiting most of the second half for them to make. You’re sitting on the sidelines so naturally you can keep a watchful eye on the score almost simultaneously as you watch the plays being navigated on the field or floor.

Well as a fan you can do that because you’re not playing the game yourself. But could you imagine what would happen if the players in the game kept their eyes on the scoreboard the entire time, trying to see just how close the score is getting. Trying to figure out just how far they are from the finish line and if they might have a chance to actually pull from behind and take the win? They can’t afford to split their focus between watching and comparing point for point how they measure up against the opposition. If they are constantly watching the scoreboard then that means that they aren’t concentrating on the forward moves that they need to be making to win the game.

Well life is much like a sports game in that way. You are always going to be in some form of competition against someone else who is trying to get to the same place that you are trying to get to. Who may very well be trying to do the exact same things that you are doing (ex. writing in the same genre, or writing the same type of short story, or writing the same kind of music, etc.). If you are a creative, chances are that you already realize that you’re not the only creative person in the world.

There are thousands, if not millions, trying to be just as successful in the same field you are trying to be successful in. If your focus is always on the person next to you, the one that you might be in direct competition with, then how can you possibly concentrate on what you’re producing and how you are representing yourself in terms of the work that you present? You might be great at multi tasking but you can not watch the scoreboard AND watch the path in front of you at the same time. If you’re so busy focused on where the other players are measuring up then you can’t possibly have solid focus on the road ahead of you.

Comparison is such a dangerous thing when you are in the creative field because you always want your work to shine and of course you want to win and while it’s true that you aren’t always going to be the winner in every scenario, you most certainly can’t win if your head isn’t in the game (and not on the scoreboard). Your only real competition is yourself so if you keep your focus on always being better than the person that you were the day before then you’ve already won. So when you get tempted to check the scoreboard of life, to see how close you are to getting the win, remember that the best way to make sure you secure the win is to keep your eyes straight ahead of you, and to keep moving forward towards the goal line. The finish line is not on the scoreboard! Until next time… #BeFocused #BeMindful #BePurposeful


Jimmetta Carpenter 



Can’t Watch the Scoreboard and Play the Game

watching the scoreboard 3

I was watching a motivational video a few months ago, still in the fog of my depression and very much still creatively blocked, and they were talking about getting to that place of success that you want to get to in life. He had a lot to say about his journey to success and about the sheer work ethic that it takes to accomplish the goals that you set for yourself but I think the most profound statement he made was that you can’t play the game that you are in (because succeeding in life is very much like playing a game) and watch the scoreboard at the same time.

It’s something that sounds really obvious if we are actually talking about playing some type of sport but in the game that is life and success overall we don’t think about that. We’re always so busy checking to see what progress we’ve made, watching the scoreboard so to speak, that we don’t realize that all the time that we waste checking to see where we’re at in life is time that could be spent making more progress.

I do that a lot. I watch the scoreboard, waiting for my side to be in the lead, showing me that I am making progress and that I’m doing something. When I’m not in the lead, when my score is not reflecting my effort, I get defeated and then my effort starts to change. I think that if I weren’t so busy keeping score of my hits and my misses then I wouldn’t have time to get defeated or to feel the sting of the setback.

If I just kept my focus on what I want and know that that is what I am aiming for without continuously watching to see how far I’ve come in my journey, or sometimes how far I still have to go in my journey, I think I could actually get to where it is that I’m going. It’s like that watched pot that takes so long to boil when you are watching it. If you just walk away and let it be, stop hovering over it and trying to watch the water come to a rolling boil, it would happen a lot sooner than you might expect. So I’m going to work on not looking at the scoreboard as I travel on this journey and just trust that as long as I’m moving forward, and never backward, that I am winning!


Jimmetta Carpenter

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