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Don’t try too hard

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It seems like China is going to get only one Gold Medal at this Winter Olympics games. It’s a bit disappointing for many Chinese who care about the game, including me. I think lots of people, especially the team China expected to win more gold medals this time. I believe four years ago we got at least two gold (Yang Yang, short track speed skating). This time we had gold hope on Pair figure skating, speed skating (both regular and short track), women’s skiing Aerial (jump), etc. But we only got one on Women’s short track. Why the disappointment? I think one reason is expectation is too high. While we had hope in those games, the competition is very intense and our opponents are very strong too. A lot depends on the performance at the spot. But we Chinese ususally can not do well when we try too hard.

This is not a problem for Chinese Athlets. Michelle Kwan, 5 times world figure skating champion, tried very hard to win a gold medal in 1998 and 2002 Olympics, did not get what she wished for. She tried again in this year but had to withdrawl at last minute because of injury. I think she tried too hard.

I want to share my own experience on this too. I wanted to go to Shanghai Jiaotong University when I graduated from high school in 1989. I was so nervous that I did not get any sleep during the college admission exam (black July). And did not make it. Four years later, I tried very hard to take the Graduate Admission Exam in order to get to the same university, I failed again. This time I failed on Math.

I made similar mistakes in a manyother things, too. Speculating on stocks is a good example. When I made some easy money on some trades at the beginning, I started to think about “double the money” so that I can get the down payment for my house. The result is of course disaster.

On the other hand, I think we should still try to do our best, but don’t try too hard.

Note: just as I thought China could only get one gold medal. Xiaopeng Han won a gold in men’s freestyle skiing (aerial). Now we are talking about the expectation and outcome. When everybody is expecting Chinese women win the gold, men’s team won. Finally some relief for the Chinese men.

In Ladies figure skating, the favorites, neither Cohen and Sluskaya did not get the gold medal. Japanese Arakawa did. I remember 4 years ago both Cohen and Sluskaya were favorties (with Kwan) but all three fell once or twice during the jump. I feel especially sorry for Irina because it’s pretty much her last Olympics (she is 27). I guess it’s just the reality of life and sports: you try your best, then you won’t regret because you have not tried.

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