thinking out loud [en]

28 Apr

USA I got invited to the Athletic Honors Banquet a few days ago. I was very flattered and proud. I think every person needs some kind of recognition, be it verbal or in the form of a gift, in front of a crowd or personal. Being honored in front of a number of people makes it an even bigger deal to me. Somebody telling everybody that what I am doing is not easy gives me a big confidence boost.

They honored not only the individual athletes, but also the best Team GPA and gave special honors to people with a perfect 4.0 GPA (not me). This also fosters the competition between the athletes and the teams. Even though the prizes that were given to the special honored were nothing special (worth wise) they had a great symbolic value and ultimately gave bragging rights to the people that got the honor over the ones that didn’t get anything.

It’s funny to me how big of an impact a little award can have on someone. On the one hand they recognize you for your hard work which is good, but it also separates you from those that did not get awarded. I don’t think that an award makes somebody better than somebody else. Banquets like that, however suggest that very thing. Our society supports outstanding athletic and academic efforts, but isn’t there an other yardstick we can use to measure somebody? Do we really have to compare ourselves to others? A renowned communication scholar (Julia T. Wood) suggests that comparing is a natural occurrence, but do we really have to distinguish between good and bad, can’t there only be an “A is different from B”?

Tell me what YOU think.


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