Lewis Hamilton - "I Forgive My Teachers Today, I Hope They Are Proud"
By Tom Hasker, Associate Partner & Mentorship Coach, Lighthouse International
You might think that after winning FOUR World F1 Driver's Championships that Lewis Hamilton has kind of got the hang of this whole driving, winning and 'superstar' life-style think right?
However, according to his Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff, he does a lot of work off the track to keep winning on it;
"One of the things that impresses me the most with him is his personal growth.
"He gets better within the team every year. He has become an integral part. He's motivating the guys if they need to be motivated, rather than the other way around."
According to CNN, Mr Wolff continues to explain that;
"It's like all of us -- if we are good in the head, everything is much easier. He is a high-performance person. He needs to be in the right spirit, energized and motivated. In the last few years, he has been there. And as far as I'm aware, he is in a good place."
So that's the key then? Just be 'in a good place' and your problems are over? Well, that is definitely a huge part of it, yes, but there is more to success than just feeling good about it.
Can you imagine a schoolboy willingly take a detention every Monday they go to school for example?
That's what Lewis Hamilton did, after spending every Friday afternoon missing lessons to practice racing on the go-kart circuit.
That kind of situation you can imagine would cause some resentment towards his teachers, especially if some of them also said that he's '...never going to amount to anything.' But according to the Mail Online, when speaking at The Global Education and Skills Forum in Dubai, Mr Hamilton explained;
“There are always going to be people criticising. I honestly think that when I was at school, it was a reflection of the difficult time my teachers were having."
“So I forgive my teachers today, I hope they are watching and they are proud.
“Because even though they had that one moment which was quite difficult for me to swallow, they still helped me, and hopefully they are in a better place today.”
It takes an enormous amount of self-reflection, motivation and self-leadership to make the realisations like the one above and to be humble enough to say it. It is no coincidence that he has won (and has recovered from a mediocre 2018 season start) four championships when he puts in the effort to understand himself and empathise with those who have helped him along the way.
“My schooling was difficult [but] now I have so much admiration for how difficult it is for a teacher,”
Explained Lewis Hamilton, according to The Times Educational Supplement.
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I write and am passionate about improving engineering & science especially transport, energy, water & sanitation and how we can use these disciplines responsibly with greater awareness. These disciplines have driven mankind in all exploration, development and advancement for generations and it is where the solutions lie to many of our current challenges.