Tanya Lee, head of marketing at SportsMax, launched The Winner Within last week Thursday, at OPA! Greek Restaurant and Chill Lounge, Devon House. The marketer's first book is a motivational one geared towards young professionals and athletes, allowing her to combine her passion for athletics with the desire to, as she put it, “help people find that dream they've always wanted to act on”.
Using personal anecdotes, plus the lessons learnt along the way, Lee couples her penchant for inspiring others with wise words from sports greats including the likes of boxing legend Muhammad Ali, Mark Cuban, NBA's Dallas Mavericks team owner, and Jamaican sprint superstar Usain Bolt.
The launch attracted several prominent local sports figures, including past president of the Jamaica Netball Association (JNA) Marva Bernard; Olympian and entrepreneur Warren Weir; and Bruce James, president of the award-winning MVP Track and Field Club. Each came to lend their support, mirroring the support she too, has shown them over the years in her capacity as both sports enthusiast and professional.
Lee, who admitted that her journey to self-fulfilment was a difficult one, given her differing career paths, including pageantry, Carnival body bronzing and teaching, noted in her book: “All winners win because they exert energy around what they are best at, or what truly matters to them most.” She expressed gratitude to family and friends who supported her on this journey and credited that support for being the driving force behind that very moment of self-fulfilment. She noted that she looked up to them all, but made special mention of athletes who, she opined, can be role models for all. “I can't think of anyone more inspirational than athletes. These are people who get up every day, train, work hard to reach the heights that they reach [despite] the obstacles that they face,” she said.
Jamaica Observer Senior Associate Editor, Lifestyle and Social Content Novia McDonald-Whyte, after being invited to speak, congratulated Lee and underscored the author's tribute to Weir with her own recount of the historic 2012 Summer Olympics in which Weir, Usain Bolt and Yohan Blake swept the coveted gold, silver and bronze medals in the 200 metres race. McDonald-Whyte lauded Lee for using stories of greatness to inspire others and urged her to tell more stories similar to that historic Olympic moment, of the many great athletes that have contributed so greatly to “Brand Jamaica”.
Cortia Bingham, We Inspire CEO, in her address applauded Lee's journey and her initiative in taking the first steps, herself, to self-fulfilment. “The story is no longer for you when it has happened. It is for the next person who is so afraid and unsure of the next step and for the person who needs the hope. That is again what you've shown tonight, Tanya — that there is hope,” Bingham said. In reference to The Winner Within's first chapter, “Get In The Ring”, Bingham applauded Lee's example of taking charge of her life, saying, “There are so many of us that want to stand in the ring and fight and there are so many reasons [like] fear, why we choose not to.”
The Winner Within by Tanya Lee can be purchased at Western Sports, Bookophilia and online at Amazon.