I have to admit, other than hockey I’m not a big pro sports fan (and sadly, Seattle has no NHL team). So I paid my usual zero attention to the Seahawks this year.
But after seeing this ESPN article on coach Pete Carroll’s counter-culture approach (which I would sum up as “treat them like you care, create a positive environment, and give them the tools to thrive in life”), I just might have to start following them.
It’s a team where meditation, yoga, and counseling are all part of the game.
You might be excused if you wrote that all off as eccentric fluff, if it weren’t for the fact that yesterday the Seahawks won the Super Bowl, and did it as one of the youngest average age teams to do so. That gives Carroll’s approach some credence.
So how about the title of this post? How could the Seahawks win yesterday change the world? Two words: Hero worship.
In many ways, I think the culture in the NFL has been a microcosm for some of the limiting qualities that get reinforced in American culture, especially for men. Be strong. Be a bad-ass. Suck it up. Don’t be a wimp (i.e., don’t show emotion, unless it’s anger). And like it or not, the culture of the sports figures we idolize has an influence on how our societal culture develops.
So suddenly a wildly successful team isn’t just modeling Bad-ass and Butch. They’re modeling being human. They’re modeling being grounded. They’re modeling caring for and supporting others.
I can’t help but think that that is planting seeds. Suddenly there’s a little ray of light shining on a more well rounded, deeper path to success.
Imagine a twelve year old boy looking at his football heroes and saying, “Hey, they meditate. I want to meditate.” What kind of difference do you suppose that would make?
Not only that, the Seahawks just won one of the biggest events in the US. Close to a third of the population tunes in to watch the game. And what is behind Super Bowl success gets attention.
So not only does this have the potential to plant seeds with young people, it also has the potential to bring things like meditation, yoga, the value of caring and compassion, etc. more onto the mainstream radar as valuable, viable aspects of a “real man’s” life.
Granted, some of this is the chronic idealist and optimist in me speaking. But even if you account for that, I think this has the potential to have a significant cultural impact.
Join the Ripple Revolution TM
Brought to you by Curt Rosengren, Passion Catalyst TM