Harry Kewell gets his marching orders

In the 2010 World Cup the Australian newspapers were full of articles about the injustices handed out to the Socceroos at the hands of the referees.

Whilst there was little doubt that the Australians didn’t have much luck when it came to the refereeing decisions, to completely blame the man with the whistle for the situation is misleading and disempowering.

There are times in life when decisions go against us as well and we can easily fall into the trap of blaming external circumstances for our current situation.  Don’t fall for it!

Here are a few key life lessons that we can learn from the Socceroos’ predicament.

Focus on what you can control.  You can’t control referee decisions so to blame them for your situation is to put your future success in the hands of others, robbing you of a lot of control in your life. 

Whilst fans can debate all that they like about the decisions in both matches so far, if the Australians had played better in game one and taken their chances in game two then they would be in a much better situation. 

Others will always make mistakes.  We know that, but can’t necessarily control it.  Far better to make sure that you are giving your best so that at the end of the day, you can reflect with pride on your efforts rather than point the finger at others.

Learn from your mistakes.  I really hope that the leaders within the Australian camp aren’t still complaining to themselves about the decisions that have gone against them.  That’s such a waste of energy.  Hopefully they are going through their past performances, analysing their own shortcomings and coming up with strategies to overcome them.   

 If you’re blaming others for the situation that you find yourself in, then you run the risk of not taking responsibility for your own development.

Be a victor, not a victim.  Life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we respond.  Winners take charge of situations and take responsibility for results.  Losers fall into a victim mentality of blame and finger-pointing.

All of us have had things go against us during our lives.  You can continue to focus on these events, giving them greater power over us than they deserve, or you can develop a winning mentality that leaves the past behind and looks for opportunities to make today a great day.

I love sport and whenever Australians are playing I’ll cheer them on with enthusiasm, but I would also be disappointed if the team and their supporters put all of the blame for their predicament on external factors.  That would be a great shame that would concern me more than a couple of red cards.

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