I was never really interested in sports. Growing up in a male-dominated environment, my brother’s sports interests didn’t rub off on me. It wasn’t until my college years that I participated in sports as a requirement.

I took up softball during my first year and football on my second year. A sprained ankle, busted lip, and several bruises after, I found myself enjoying every class. What I thought would be the one I would cut class on turned out to be one of my favorites. Fast forward to present time, I signed up for Sun Life’s football clinic without a hitch, not even minding whether I would get bruises again.

So how did the world turn right side up? It’s because of these five things I learned that I’d like to share with you:

1. There’s no “I” in team. Playing sports is a team effort. You don’t get to the other side of the field without your team mates passing you the ball. You wouldn’t score points without your team mate watching your back.

2. Treat others as you want to be treated. The Golden Rule stands true for every aspect in life. How would you want your team mate pass you the ball? Gently and accurately, right? Would you want to shine on the court? Then let others shine too.

3. You will fall but you can always stand up. The path to being good at something is no easy feat. You may lose, you may fall and you may get bruises on your knees, but that’s all part of the game. Basketball legend Michael Jordan once said: “I've missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I've lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I've been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I've failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”

4. You don’t compete with others but yourself. Some may not agree with me on this, but it isn’t always about winning a game but what you learn from it. I may not like the competition but I like a good challenge. You do not have to better than the others, you just have to be better than what you were the last time you played.

5. It’s fun and healthy! I want to be fit and healthy, but I didn’t want to do it like it was work – like going to the gym. Getting into sports keeps you fit while having a good time.

Image via Brandon and Kristin Kidd

Mika Amador Mika Amador

Mika Amador

Mika is a writer by heart, a digital marketer by profession, a wellness enthusiast by belief, and a sketcher in progress. She is part of the Sun Life’s Digital Marketing and Brighter Life Team. Follow her adventures through her IG @mikaelaamador.