Nanny Knows Best

Although Mary Poppins may have saved the day with "a spoon full of sugar", Nanny V employs a more pragmatic approach. No magic, just simple love, attention and consistency. And a healthy dose of humour.

NOT SECOND BEST

Posted by Nanny Knows Best
Nanny Knows Best
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on Monday, 01 June 2015
I've never really understood why coming first, being first, or winning, is so important in life.

When people think Second Place Is For Losers, it basically means that if someone gets second place in a competition (that has more than two contestants), it's little better than coming in last. It doesn't matter if you've won a footrace with everyone on the planet, and bested 6,999,999,998 people (or there about). All that matters is you didn't beat the one.

Is it losing or nearly winning? Is it doing your best and being elated with your performance but disappointed because one person did their best better than yours?

As a five year old in grade one, Sister Anthony gave us large brown 1960s-era shopping paper bags and paint. Boys drew Prince Charming. Girls, Cinderella.

Mine was voted the best which meant that my acting debut had me muffling lines about a glass slipper and wicked step-sisters through the bag on my head. It scarred me for life.

I sometimes wonder if I hadn't come first and consequently subjected to this simultaneous art and drama class, I may have eventually found my own path to a Thespian life and obviously, great stardom!

Bertrand Russell so eloquently philosophised, "real life is, to most men, a long second best, a perpetual compromise between the ideal and the possible".

In all seriousness it is well and good to strive for the best, but delight in the journey and the lessons encountered, as this is what makes a life. The vision, the passion, the discipline, humbleness, relief, and judgement are merely a few aspects to consider.

Compromise may sound boring in an equation for success, however, one must consider too, responsibility and balance are important for achieving long term goals.

I guess I will never have the fire and determination to coach the next Roger Federer or the stubborn doggedness to motivate another Steve Jobs, but I do and will have the compassion and unconditional support for each child I help to feel good about their achievements no matter how simple or momentary.

Sometimes all a child needs is hugs and smiles and knowing that you care about them.
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