5 Lessons From Cheaters

5 Lessons From Cheaters

In this week’s Success Newsletter, I would like to reveal the 5 lessons that can be learned from cheaters, specifically 3 players who cheated in an international sports game and brought shame and humiliation upon an entire nation.

First a quick update:

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Now, let’s talk about the 5 lessons that can be learned from cheaters.

To Australia, the game of cricket is even more significant than baseball is to America. To be chosen to represent the Australian cricket team is an honor and privilege.

The Australian cricket team was losing to South Africa in Cape Town in March, 2018. Three Australian players decided to try to get a winning edge by sandpapering the ball. On March 24, one player did it on the field and tried to hide the sandpaper in his pants but a live TV camera caught him cheating.

In response, the Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull labeled the cheating as a national disgrace.

Three players were involved: Steve Smith (captain), David Warner, and Cameron Bancroft; they each received suspensions.

Captain Steve Smith held a press conference to publicly apologize, and he broke down in tears and resigned as captain.

Smith had also tried to fool the public regarding the nature, extent and participants of the plan. In turn, many people responded by claiming that Smith was not sorry for what he did, he was crying and sorry that he got caught.

And that is true.

Would either of the 3 cheating players have come on camera and cried to the world for their actions if they had never been caught? Would they have admitted to the world that they cheated, that it was wrong and ‘I regret it’ if they had never been caught?

Of course, not.

When a person cheats, he or she is not thinking about the consequences.

He or she is not thinking about the people that he is hurting.

The cheating is a purely selfish action; it is not designed to help or benefit anyone else.

This applies to cheating in business, a relationship, or in a sports game.

The players who were involved in the cheating were only interested in winning for themselves. They did not ask the Australian people, ‘Would it be okay for you to win if we had to cheat to win?’

They wanted to win to make themselves look good.

During the press conference, a reporter asked Steve Smith what he would say to children who watch the game. Smith replied that it is important to always consider the way that your actions will affect or hurt others.

That is true.

Lesson 1: Stop and think about the way your actions will affect others

Because they got caught cheating, Australia suffered a huge loss in national pride, and in fact, felt shame.

However, Smith left out the most important lesson: Think first about whether or not what you’re about to do is the right or wrong thing to do.

If these players who cheated had never been caught, and if Australia had won the cricket game then the team and country would have not been directly hurt by their act of deception. However, that would not change the fact that what they did is wrong and immoral.

The same principle applies in relationships. If you cheat on your partner and your partner never finds out, then your partner would not necessarily be directly hurt by the action. However it’s still the wrong thing to do.

Lesson 2 (perhaps the first lesson): focus on doing the right thing.

In almost every situation we all know what the right thing to do is. And doing the right thing is a choice!

Doing the right thing when it is the hardest thing to do is what forms character!
Doing the right thing in this situation would have been to play by the rules knowing you would still lose the game.

Lesson 3: Fulfill your responsibility as a role model
These players represented an entire country and therefore the responsibility is to do the right thing on behalf of the entire country.

A CEO, an accountant or national sportsman is representing more than oneself, more than one individual. A sportsman playing in an international competition is often also a role model and idol for young people. Therefore that person has an additional responsibility to be a strong and exemplary role model. (A father is a role model to his children.)

Lesson 4: Practice self-control & self-discipline to resist temptation
The cheating by these 3 players occurred because of a lack of morality, a desire to win at any cost, greed, ego, and extreme selfishness.

These players didn’t cheat because of childhood issues they cheated because they lack morality and self-control.

Lesson 5: Rebuild your character – accept the consequences of your betrayal and do all that is necessary to regain respect and trust
People continue to debate about whether or not these players need more punishment or more empathy and compassion.

It is true that we all make mistakes, it is true but we often make errors of judgment. However, when you are a national role model something greater is required to regain the respect and forgiveness of the entire country. While the feminine approach might be to simply forgive and offer compassion, the masculine approach is that there are consequences to every action and you must rebuild and demonstrate good character to be granted trust and forgiveness.

And the only way to truly demonstrate remorse and regret is to be willing to suffer, to truly embrace the consequences of one’s errors in order to gain back the respect and forgiveness of an entire nation.

If you need personal help to overcome a betrayal, disappointment or your own guilt or shame – book a one-on-one session with me.

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I wish you the best and remind you “Believe in yourself -You deserve the best!”

Patrick Wanis Ph.D.
Celebrity Life Coach, Human Behavior & Relationship Expert & SRTT Therapist

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