Words & Sports

The North Carolina Tar Heels Show Us How to Come Back From A Tough Loss

Congratulations to the 2017 College Basketball National Champions, the North Carolina Tar Heels!

Just last year, the North Carolina Tar Heels came within moments of winning the NCAA Tournament, but lost on a buzzer beater in the final game to the Villanova Wildcats. Imagine coming that close to your ultimate goal only to come up short—and then coming back the following year to push even harder and win it all? We have seen amazing teams go through this recently: from the Cleveland Cavaliers to the Kansas City Royals to the Clemson Tigers. And we are even witnessing the Golden State Warriors and the Cleveland Indians attempt to come back from shockingly close defeats.

How would you respond to a tough loss?

Imagine for a moment you are about to win one of the biggest deals of your business life. From your vantage point, it looks like a sure thing. You have hustled and you have done everything right. And then, seemingly out of nowhere and at the last second, it falls apart. A competitor gets the deal. You don’t. You lose. All that work. What was the point?

As we are finding out from these awesome comeback stories, the point was that it could be incredibly motivational.

You must realize that getting oh so close means you must be doing something right—and that’s a positive first step. Next, all that work has a chance to pay off in other ways. You likely received some kind of exposure, which could lead to another deal down the road. Perhaps you learned something new and important you weren’t aware of before. The fact of the matter is not every team makes it to the College Basketball National Championship Game and just getting to that point is an accomplishment most can only dream about.

I get it though, in the moment, it’s difficult to have perspective. You’re devastated and frustrated. What is your response? Do you hang your head? Do you give up, move to a new industry and start all over? Maybe you get back at it and try again but you don’t commit like you used to because you don’t think it will be worth it.

The North Carolina Tar Heels didn’t have that kind of response. They lost key players from a season before and played in a tough Athletic Coast Conference (ACC). But they won the 2017 College Basketball National Championship because they didn’t hang their heads for long and they didn’t quit on themselves. Perhaps they learned how to respond by watching teams before them. They got back at it and were motivated by what they termed their “redemption tour”.

You do the same. You find the positives. You almost had the deal of your life, so you know you’re on the path to success—if you keep doing what you have been doing you will get another chance. You get to the office early, you hustle, you do great work. And a new opportunity presents itself.

How do you respond?

Ask the 2017 College Basketball National Champion, North Carolina Tar Heels.

Enjoy the CBS montage video that concludes the NCAA Basketball Tournament every year, One Shining Moment, honoring the amazing run of the Tar Heels: