Why Admire LeBron? For Pursuing Happiness.

I’ve written at length about LeBron’s unpleasant summer, but to be fair, I do want to point out a reason to admire LeBron. Here’s an excerpt from an interview with a GQ reporter who followed LeBron around during “The Decision” process:

“[LeBron James] thrives, he’s happiest, he does his best when he is surrounded by friends. He just didn’t feel like that was happening in Cleveland. It seems pretty clear that Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh aren’t just the best talent he can surround himself with, but they’re a combination of talent and friends. He’s looking for camaraderie. That’s the formula that has worked for him — and the only one that has worked for him. And that comes out of his early childhood when he was completely alone in the apartment he shared with his mother, not knowing his father, not knowing when or if she’d come home. It seems to me these were formative scarring moments that created this need for constant intimate contact. It came across to me watching the documentary. It came across to me reading Buzz’s book. And it especially came across to me when he was introduced to the fans in Miami with Wade and Bosh by his side. He’s not just looking to win. He’s also looking to be happy, and he’s only happy when he’s surrounded by people he cares for and trusts. He’s at his best when he has his brothers in arms around him and he’s at his worst when he’s completely alone.”

While there’s a lot to criticize in how he implemented his decision, at its core, LeBron had the self-awareness to know what kind of situation would make him happy, and decided to prioritize the relationships that matter to him over money or his reputation. And that I cannot criticize.

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