Eighteen days have come and gone and just like that the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics are over. Although it began clouded with controversy, doubt over unfinished facilities, and worries about security, the Sochi Olympics once again reminded us about the true spirit of the Games, and how optimism and hard work can make a world of difference.
Once again Canada proved why we have such a positive international reputation; from cross-country coach Justin Wadsworth helping a Russian skier when his ski broke during a race, to speed skater Gilmore Junio giving up his spot to fellow Canadian Denny Morrison because it was in the best interest of the team (and who went on to win Silver!). The true spirit of the Olympics is about not only hard work and determination, but about bringing people together. Even athletes from opposing countries greet and congratulate each other at the finish line and a “thumbs up” or a pat on the back was used when language was a barrier. One of the most memorable and moving examples of this was when Swiss cross-country skier Dario Cologna finished 1st, and then waited 28 minutes to congratulate Roberto Carcelen, a 43 year old from Peru competing in his first Olympics with broken ribs, and who had only been skiing since 2005.
These Olympics also reminded us that nothing is over until it’s over with the nail biting Women’s Gold Medal Hockey game where Canada came back from a 0-2 score against team USA with 3 minutes left in the game to win the game 3-2 in overtime. That game exemplified how working hard right until the end, not giving up, and maintaining a positive attitude can have amazing results.
Even through losses and hardships, a positive attitude can make all the difference. Despite Canadian figure skating darlings and Gold medal hopefuls, Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir, finishing with a Silver medal, they beamed on the podium and accepted their position with grace and dignity, solidifying why we love them. Even Russia made the best of an unfortunate situation, by poking fun at themselves and acknowledging the failed ring opening during the closing ceremonies. All in all these were the kind of games that lead us to feel that the world can be a great place when positive attitudes abound.
With spring around the corner, this is a great time for new beginnings, to acknowledge our strengths, and to channel positivity. This can be done by seeking help for trouble in our personal lives and relationships through counselling and mediation. The Sochi Olympics are proof that pessimism and negativity can be transformed into something positive through hard work, determination, and an optimistic attitude.by