Updated: Oct 11, 2019
Coming from a relatively active family, my parents ensured sports were a part of my everyday life. Up until my late 20's I have been participating in high level competition sports. Starting with Basketball, from childhood to Soccer and Boxing during my teens then eventually ending up in Aussie Rules. In every code I participated in, the coaching and mentors around me had an underlying effect that would continue with me into my business life.
Practise, Practise, Practise!
I was never a tall kid so playing basketball I had to harness my skills in other areas. Playing point guard I needed to concentrate on my dribbling and shooting. Every night after school I would shoot 100 shots and do 20 minutes of dribbling exercises.
My immediate instinct was to translate this training method to develop my business brain. I am not an academic individual, so I had to be relentless with effort. I would read book after book, sometimes I would read entire chapters again and again because I had absolutely NO idea with what they meant. I still listen to audio books and attend seminars whenever I get a chance because I love training. You only get out, what you put in.
Growing up as a teen and playing sports is a really hard balancing act. Girls, Parties, and normal social fun would deter any 15-year-old boy off their path. A common occurrence was my absence from Social Gathering and Birthday Parties due to my training time table. Sunday mornings were 7am starts on the track and selection was made that day. Depression was a common feeling at this time... though the feeling of winning the following week superseded it.
Small steps, climb mountains. Ensure every day that commitment is applied to that small task. Sunday mornings is a good time to sleep in for some. Sunday mornings are still the same for me with 7am starts. Whether it’s a relaxing walk while I listen to my audio book or doing some research. It’s now routine.
Six weeks after our final game of the season, we would commence Pre Season Training. It would be approximately 5 months of pre-season torture before the first bounce of the following season. During our pre-season we would run ridiculous distances and attend rigorous training camps and push our bodies to the absolute limit. Regurgitating the previous night’s meal was a common sight during these training sessions.
Not only were we pushing ourselves physically to the limit but we had to conquer all mental barriers to get there. The moment's when quitting is flooding your thoughts and you find that extra 1% of energy to complete that task - It is an addictive feeling. Using this practice in business meant that I knew the capacity I could push my stress levels.
Team Work. Even though we had stand out players in our team, one person could never win a game. It was a team effort. Everyone had a role. In football, someone had to kick the flashy goals and some had to get the hard ball. Sometimes one person had to sacrifice their body by diving into a pack. It wasn't glamourous, and Sure we suffered a few concussions and surgeries over the years however the respect gained from our team mates in order for us to succeed well surpassed the temporary pain.
Sometimes it may be 9PM and you'll still be crunching away at the office, or in the Study at home finalizing emails at 1AM - But sacrifice has to be made in order for the team to succeed.
I hope this article provides you a bit of insight on to why some people are successful and why some others are not. A lot of times it’s not about skill... but about effort.