Terrel Owens has long been known for his football skills, but progressively as much for his antics and attitude. Now he’s known for a new thing: skipping his induction into the Football Hall of Fame ceremony in Canton, Ohio. Fans and players alike are stupefied about why he would miss this golden opportunity.
Owens, the first recipient ever to snub the ceremonies, has said he doesn’t need to be there and that he chooses to celebrate “his honor” in his own way, at his own place, in his own time. He doesn’t view the opportunity as a golden moment.
But it is. It is a golden opportunity to . . .
- Embrace the greatest individual honor a football player can receive.
- Share the honor with his family, friends, fans, fellow HOF classmates, and fellow Hall of Famers.
- Share his journey, his obstacles and victories, and inspire a young generation of ball players.
- Acknowledge those who helped him along the way: his coaches, his friends, his fans.
- Display grace and humility about his career and waiting a few years to be inducted—others of equal stature have waited longer.
- Tell the world about his grandmother, the woman who deserves a world of credit for helping him believe in himself and his destiny.
Yes, it’s a golden opportunity.
It occurs to me that we can all do the same thing in our lives: Take a stand for something that seems personally significant to us but doesn’t consider the wide and potentially disappointing impact on others. It’s probably a wise thing to remember this sage advice: “No one lives to himself and no one dies to himself.” We don’t make our decisions in a bubble. We all have golden opportunities to choose, act, and speak with humility, grace, gratitude, and focus on others. We can choose to make a moment, not a point. We’ll be less likely for regrets if we do.