What is vision? Webster defines it a few different ways. Vision is what you see and I love that double entendre. Vision is the act or power of anticipating that which will or may come to be. Vision is an experience in which a personage, thing or event appears vividly or credibly to the mind, although not actually present. Vision is a vivid, imaginative conception or anticipation.
So, what’s your vision? As a student-athlete, vision is essential. Furthermore, as an individual, vision is essential. Who are we if we can’t see ourselves? Not in the present, but where we will be. Vision shapes the future version of who you are and what you’ll accomplish.
As a teenager, I had vision, like many other young basketball players, to play in the NBA. I wanted to have an all around game like Tracy McGrady.
I loved to play defense like Gary Payton and talk junk like Kevin Garnett. But, that was just my vision. Everything around me said my vision couldn’t possibly become a reality. I lived in a small city of Niagara Falls where the school systems were broken and the economy was poverty stricken.
We were more likely to drop out of high school, have children, go to jail, or die more than we were to graduate high school. Let’s not even mention college! To be honest, I didn’t even understand or know what college was until my junior year of high school. I had one thing though, a vision. That vision, brought hope to a city where there was none.
Through hard work, dedication, and an unfathomable amount of love, those around me gained vision. From neighborhood terrors, 8 division 1 basketball players, 2 NBA players and an NFL star arose. All from a vision. A vision that maybe one day we could be the change.
I actually never made it to the NBA. For a while, I thought negatively in regard to myself because of that. I walked the streets feeling like a failure. A failure to those who I made believers of my vision. A failure to the city that raised me and a failure to those who saw in me what I saw for myself. And then one day, I realized that vision never dies. I realized that vision is what you see.
So what did I do? I started looking again, but this time when I opened my eyes, my perspective was far greater than it was when I was kid who was only allowed to walk down main street to the YMCA and back home. I had seen things. I had traveled. I had been introduced to people’s perspectives who didn’t look like me and when I started to form my vision, this time it was through a new lens. It was then, that I realized, vision is the gateway to destiny, but your destiny is far greater than your vision.
Had I made it to the NBA, I wouldn’t be who I am today; a seasoned and experienced scholar, mentor, brother, writer, entrepreneur, and indignant young man of color.
So I leave you with this thought.
When you have vision, you aren’t distracted by opportunity. There are many things that you can be doing, but does it align with what you see for yourself? Stay true to who you know you are deep down on the inside. Always Guard and protect your vision, and your ability to see what others cannot.
Most importantly, never forget, that You’ve Got Odds2Beat!