Of all the shows on TV, my wife and I like the Amazing Race the best. If you’ve never seen it, the “Race” usually starts off with about 14 teams. These teams are made up of a cross section of American demographics: spouses, gay and straight couples, ethnic groups, co-workers, family members…any two people who want to go through the contest together. To make it more exciting, my wife and I each pick a team by the third leg and root for them until the end. The contestants travel the world completing challenges along each leg of the race as quickly as possible or face elimination. Each of them will stretch themselves to their limits as they vie for the grand prize…ONE MILLION DOLLARS.
Now a million dollars seems like a lot of money, but split it with your team mate and then take out the taxes, you’re still talking real money, but not so much. There can only be one “million dollar” team. The others are gone…gone…gone, with perhaps a small prize for coming in first on one of the legs along the way. So why do it? If you can stop obsessing about the prize for a second, this is a great way to see the world and experience its cultures. The real importance of the Amazing Race is how each teams’ character is revealed under pressure.
Racers that appear to be so “lovey-dovey” when things are going well, eat each other up when elimination looms ahead. As you go through the “Race” the intensity mounts. The true winners are the teams that treat each other with love and respect when the going gets tough. It’s the only realistic prize you can walk away with in the end, since the odds are stacked against you for the million. The take away lesson from the Amazing Race is: how would I treat the other person on my team as we were going through a rough patch? Would I be supportive or corrosive?
Life is an “Amazing Race.” The teams on the show are the real representations of our relationships and we compete along with them every day. Let’s enjoy them as we travel on each leg of our day-to-day race, whether you achieve the success that you’ve carved out for yourself or not. Run the race to win it! Keep your eye on the real prize…each other.