Yesterday was my marching band’s last competition of the season. The end of the season in anything always brings a mixture of different emotions. We can be happy that it’s over, because maybe it was a long season and a break is needed. We can also be a little sad that it’s over, because that’s just the way endings of anything can make you feel. Another common emotion can be regret. Sometimes we don’t realize we have the potential for success until it’s too late.
Every single season of marching band has started out with a feeling of excitement for what the coming weeks have to bring. This feeling quickly turns from excitement to a lack of interest from some of the band members (read more about this “lack of interest” in my post about team commitment). Finally, as the season comes to a close, many realize the potential the group had but never met because of an absence of focus from some of the band members. This can lead to regret from some of these people that they didn’t work harder to achieve this potential.
After our final competitive performance last night, I felt this feeling of regret. I didn’t regret what I hadn’t done, but rather that I couldn’t get some of the others to put in as much time as I had. As we stood in a circle around our directors, we talked about how we had performed. According to one of the directors, we had performed the show as well as we were ever going to. This was depressing, especially because we ranked so low. It’s not that we didn’t have the potential to do better than that, but we just didn’t have enough commitment from some of the people to match this potential.
I love what the leader of our drumline said (paraphrasing here because I have horrible memory of exactly what he said): “Even though there is no I in team, the work that an individual does, is what makes the team as a whole, better.” It doesn’t matter how hard anyone in the marching band, or on any team, works. If every single individual isn’t putting in their best effort, the team will never be able to reach its full potential.
Remember that even though there isn’t an I in team, there is a me. That doesn’t mean you are MORE important than any other person on the team, but you are still important and you need to put forth all you can give for the team.
In a perfect world, we would prevent that feeling of regret at the end of the season by putting the highest amount of effort possible by every single individual into every single rehearsal.