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“Success is the ability to go from failure to failure without losing your enthusiasm.”
– Winston Churchill
Failure framed properly creates learning opportunities. For each failure the competitor gains knowledge that will help them in a future competition. This knowledge gained is what keeps the competitive heart beating. The enthusiasm is what is required to continually attempt to use the knowledge gained from failures.
Winston Churchill provides a glimpse of success in noting that you must keep moving forward and learn from failure after failure and maintain your enthusiasm. Applied to today’s society, many competitors personalize winning and losing as who they are. The usual thought process or self-talk goes like this, “When I win, I am a winner.” Or “When I lose, I am a loser.”
To be a true competitor, this must be changed, a shift to understanding that competition is a learning opportunity, as Duke Basketball Coach Mike Krzyzewski believes, “Each game is a checkpoint in our progress.” When you have the Heart of a Competitor, you understand the competition is a method for gauging your progress. Thus, the competition provides feedback that you can LEARN from, act upon, and come out improving upon.
The Heart of the Competitor maintains this view of learning from failure and can achieve success as quoted above by Winston Churchill, moving from failure to failure, knowing that we are learning, maintains our enthusiasm. When we maintain our enthusiasm, we will achieve at a higher level.
Merriam-Webster defines the noun version of PURPOSE as the aim or goal of a person: what a person is trying to do, become.
Through the Heart of a Competitor, a purpose is being defined as a never-ending quest in what you are trying to become. A purpose is not an end point, it is development rooted inside you. Goals are set to provide a target; however, accomplishment of goals should never be an ending point. All great competitors reach beyond their current capabilities and you are a great COMPETITOR, so push yourself beyond your current comfort level. The progression is easy to be observed. The first goal is to make the team, which progresses to pursuing a starting spot, leading to a desire to be recognized as an all-star, to being a perennial all-star, to pursuing Hall of Fame status.
While much of these accomplishments noted above are outcome-based accomplishments, out of a person’s control, it demonstrates the competitor’s focus on achieving at the highest level possible.
True purpose is about becoming the best person you can become. Along the way, recognition and accomplishments will occur; however, they come from the world, where true purpose comes from within.
Choose to maintain your purpose at the center of your life and development.
“Those who spend most of their energy “reacting to change” will do exactly that, expend most of their energy reacting to change. In a great twist of irony, those who bring about the most significant change in the world, those who have the largest impact on the economy and society, are themselves enormously consistent in their approach.”
– Jim Collins and Morten T. Hansen Authors of Great by Choice
The Heart of a Competitor is a strong force that can lead an individual, family, team, and organization to great heights. Thus far, when discussing energy, the line has been drawn in making a choice between being a positive thinker and being a negative thinker. The choice can be made to establish positive thoughts in our lives. Even as this choice is made, the way of the world tugs at our energy, wanting to pull us back toward the negative.
To fight the negative way of the world, a consistent positive approach is imperative. Looking back at significant figures in history, they were consistent in their approach. Mohandas Gandhi himself is quoted as saying, “I am committed to truth, not consistency.” This quote exemplifies his consistent commitment to truth and equality. There is no argument that Gandhi had a large impact on society. Gandhi did not spend his energy reacting to change, he was consistently seeking truth, and in turn, he moved people to large changes in society.
Question of the Day:
What can you do today to maintain or establish consistency in your life, which will allow you to create change instead of reacting to change?
“In self-actualizing people, the work they do might better be called “mission,” “calling,” “duty,” “vocation,” in the priest’s sense. This mission in life is actually so identified with the self that it becomes as much a part of the worker as his liver or lungs. For the truly fortunate worker, the ideally enlightened worker to take away work (mission in life) would be almost equivalent to killing him.”
– Abraham Maslow, Author of Maslow on Management
Abraham Maslow was ahead of his time. As pictured above, he established Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, a hierarchy in which a lower level must be met before moving on to the higher level. This quote lends focus to the top of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, Self-Actualization. A self-actualizing person must have all of their lower level needs met.
The Heart of the Competitor establishes character that is defined by their mission or purpose. The Heart of the Competitor engrains their mission so deep within themselves, that it becomes part of their being. Maslow notes this as their work and labels them as a worker; however, he does not mention this as being their job.
Focus on your work and being a worker. The CHARACTER in the Heart of the Competitor is the mission of continued development to be the best you that you can become.
Question of the Day:
What is your MISSION/PURPOSE statement that will drive you on a daily basis?
I would love to hear what your mission or purpose is that drives you on a daily basis. Share it with the Community of Competitors!!