Lynn Vartan

Musician. Educator. Explorer.

Core Values We Can Take From Athletes: Joy, Mindfulness, Compassion, Competition

I read an interview of Luke Walton from the Golden State Warriors about his then new coach Steve Kerr and the 4 core values that he had established as the foundation of the team. The values were joy, mindfulness, compassion and competition. It was really inspiring to read about how the team has been applying those values to their individual and team work. I think there is just tons that we can take from the sports world and it’s work ethic. While those values are clearly a recipe for success for the Warriors, I think they can very much be applied to music, teaching and life in general!

The first value is approaching things with joy – which actually I like much better than saying we should find happiness in everything. We put a lot of pressure and value on happiness but I think joy and happiness are two different concepts. In a musical context, you can apply joy to the process of practicing but that does not necessarily mean that you are happy during the entirety of the exercise. But the joy comes from the process and the doing!

The second one I love to think about while working – mindfulness. In music or at practice, it is important to be in tune with what you are sensing in the present moment rather than focusing on possibilities or past experiences. I love how Walton describes mindfulness as thinking the game. He said: “it’s not just trying to out-talent people; it’s not trying to go for your individual stats. It’s being mindful of the right way to do things.” That is definitely a great value to have.

The next value, competition, is a given with athletes but it is a great one to have in life. Being competitive with yourself and a little bit competitive with others helps push you forward and constantly redefines your level of excellence. It’s really important to not become complacent and to keep growing, reevaluating your abilities no matter what your skills are.

Finally, compassion is probably what helps bring the team together more than any other value that Kerr has taught his players. Compassion is the ability to understand the emotional state of another person. It helps create human connections and brings people closer in challenging times. Compassion is something we can never get too much of and that we need more in our everyday actions and our communication with others!

Do you agree that the values taught in sports can also be applied to our daily life? What are core values that you live by? I would love to know!


Luke Walton Interview

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This entry was posted on February 12, 2019 by in Uncategorized.
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