In a press conference to kick off the New York Mets spring training session, outfielder Tim Tebow made remarks that struck home to me.
Tebow's full quote reads: "It's really about keeping perspective and not letting other people define you because they sure do want to. I try to encourage young people all the time to not let the world or other people people, outside sources, define you because you are always going to have critics and naysayers and people that are going to tell you that you won't, you can't and you shouldn't. Most of those people are the people that didn't, that wouldn't, that couldn't.
"Don't be defined by outside sources. Go after your dreams. Succeeding or failing is not making it to the "bigs" or not necessarily fulfilling that. It's having to not live with regret because I didn't try. I just feel for all the young people out there that don't go after something because they are so afraid of failing. You're going to live without a lot more regret than you would've if you tried and failed. I'm very passionate about that.
"I think the reason that a lot of people don't go after things is because how much you will be criticized. What if I fall flat on my face? So fear and doubt and all these things creep in and I just don't believe that is the healthiest way to live. I don't want to live with fear or doubt everyday. And regardless of what everyone here says about me, that doesn't define me. I'm so grateful that doesn't define me. There's one thing that defines me and that's what God says about me and besides that I get to go live out my dreams and try to help as many people along the way as possible."
Tebow is a former collegiate standout for the Florida Gators, who led his team to two BCS National Championships and won the Heisman Trophy in 2007. Tebow was drafted in the first round of the 2010 NFL Draft but his NFL career was short-lived.
With his career in football seemingly over, Tebow turned to a childhood love in baseball. The New York Mets provided him the opportunity to play in their minor league system with the hope, like every other player within their farm system, to one day be promoted to the big league squad.
Tebow faced scrutiny through the media and other outlets that he is trying to use his likeness to stay relevant in today's world because he washed up in football. Others persecute the Mets organization for allowing him to do such a thing. But in Tebow's eyes, he is just chasing a dream.
His quote from Monday would be far less significant had it came from just anyone's mouth. But because it came from a guy who lives out exactly what was stated, it hits home to a person like me.
My favorite part was when he said that our successes and failures are not necessarily defined by reaching the pinnacle of our dreams and aspirations but success is measured by the amount of regret that is in our lives once we look back over our journey to our dreams.
I want to be like Tim Tebow. Yes, I would like to be 6-foot-4 with a chiseled, muscular frame and play in both the NFL and professional baseball. But that's not possible. So I'll just stick to what I can achieve, something that Tebow already has accomplished. I want to block out the naysayers and chase after what I want in my life. And more importantly, live a life that has the least amount of regrets as possible.