Be a goldfish! That’s one of the mantras you’ll hear from soccer coach Ted Lasso when you watch the highly acclaimed series that bears his name. We just finished the last episode this past weekend. Ted is an American football coach hired to manage a British soccer team.
Although Ted doesn’t know anything about soccer he knows a lot about people and is able to bring together a franchise of squabbling, self-centred, unsuccessful, hurting players and staff and meld them into a supportive, caring, successful family. Ted has a sign over the door of his office that says BELIEVE in capital letters and that’s maybe what sets Ted a part. He BELIEVES in the basic goodness of people and their potential to achieve any goal.
The ‘be a goldfish’ mantra is only one of many Ted Lasso has made famous. He says when you make a mistake, or have a fight with someone you need to be a goldfish, because they only have a ten second memory. ‘Be a goldfish’ means don’t dwell on your personal errors or conflicts with others but move on and be happy.
Some other wise things Ted has to say are……
Be curious not judgemental.
There is something worse than being sad and that’s being alone and being sad.
Taking on a challenge is a lot like riding a horse. If you are comfortable doing it, you are probably doing it wrong.
The harder you work, the luckier you get.
If you care about someone and you have a little love in your heart there isn’t anything you can’t get through.
If all this sounds a little too inspirational and uplifting to make a riveting television series, I assure you it is not. The characters in Ted Lasso all have major flaws and that causes all kinds of problems and conflicts.
Critics are saying the reason for the success of the Ted Lasso series, which won seven Emmy awards in its first season, is that in these difficult and often negative times people are hungry for a character like Ted who is positive, compassionate, humble and kind no matter how mean people are to him. He remains hopeful despite his own personal struggles. Ted sees the best in people and tries to get them to recognize their own strengths. It does the heart good to imagine a world where everyone did that.