Over the weekend I saw a great movie called The Other Dream Team.
If you recall, the original Dream Team was the USA basketball team in the 1992 Olympics. This was the first time NBA professionals competed in the Olympics. The USA Dream Team kicked butt. They won the gold medal with an 8 – 0 record. They outscored their opponents 938 to 588. Their average margin of victory was 42 points. As Coach Chuck Daly said, they were “majestic.”
Along the way to the gold medal, they beat Lithuania – the other dream team — in the semifinal. Lithuania beat the Unified Team, a collection of countries that previously comprised the Soviet Union, for the bronze medal. The irony here is that in 1988, the Soviet Union defeated the USA for the gold medal. Four of the starters on that team were Lithuanians. The movie tells the story of how the basketball team came to symbolize Lithuanian independence.
At the beginning of World War II, the Soviet Union began an occupation of Lithuania. On March 11, 1990, while still occupied by the Soviet Union, Lithuanians voted to become independent of the Soviet Union. The Soviet Union finally recognized Lithuanian independence in September of 1991.
Basketball is an important sport in Lithuania. The four starters from the 1988 USSR gold medal team vowed to compete representing Lithuania in the 1992 Olympics. They got a boost from an unlikely source – the Grateful Dead. The Dead provided the funds necessary to equip and train the 1992 Lithuanian national basketball team. If you were around then, you might remember the Grateful Dead tie dyed T shirts the team wore.
Lithuania was eliminated from gold medal contention by the USA. But they considered the bronze medal game against the Unified Team to be there gold medal. They won 82 – 78. The entire country rejoiced.
The Other Dream Team is the story of Lithuania under Soviet occupation and the members of their 1992 dream team. It’s an inspirational story. And one that contains some great career advice.
Tweets 8 and 9 in my career advice book, Success Tweets: 140 Bits of Common Sense Career Success Advice, All in 140 Characters or Less, captures is quite well. “Don’t focus just on making money. If you do, you’ll be asking too little of yourself. Focus on how you can be useful in this world. (8) “Happiness doesn’t come from getting more things. It comes from finding a worthy purpose and pursuing it.” (9)
The 1992 Lithuanian basketball team focused on restoring pride to a country that had recently won its independnece after being occupied by a foreign power for 50 years. This was a worthy purpose that they pursued with all their might. 20 years later the players on that team are emotional when they discuss it.
I have a mighty purpose — helping other people create the life and career success they want and deserve.
I get up everyday and pursue it passionately. I speak about success. I blog about it. I write books about it. I coach people in how to achieve success. Recently I did a webinar on how to create your success while working in a corporation. You can view a free replay of it at http://budurl.com/MCCWebinar/
How can you be useful in this world? What is your passion? What is your mighty purpose? If you truly want to create the life and career success you deserve, find your passion and purpose and live them every day.
John D. Rockefeller once said, “If your only goal is to become rich, you will never achieve it.” He was right. The best way to create your success is to find something about which you are passionate and pursue it with all your might – just like the other dream team.