The Olympics have been a big (& sometimes good) diversion! I'm a sucker for the heartwarming stories about the athletes, rooting for the under-dog (or the obvious favorite) & even watching when things don't go the way that the athletes have planned for the last four years (US track relay). Despite being pulled away from some important things in my life, I've also learned so much from these amazing individuals who put so much of themselves into what they do. While there are many athletes that are outstanding, I'm going to focus on Michael Phelps & what I've learned watching him do something that no one else has done.
- Challenges are not an excuse - Michael's Dad left the family, he had ADHD & he has indicated that kids picked on him sometimes. All of that could have been used as an excuse - "It's too hard; I can't do it; It's not worth the effort". Are you letting excuses hold you back from your potential?
- Focus, focus, focus - How much focus do you need to become an Olympian? Years of swimming, hours of practice every day. You don't decide mid-way that you want to try something else. It's not always easy, but it's worth it. "It's been nothing but an upwards roller-coaster and it's been nothing but fun," Phelps said. Your business won't always run along smoothly, but use that focus to keep you going - you will be so glad that you pushed through!
- Use negativity to fuel your success - Many people thought Phelps couldn't do what he set out to do. The French team even said they were going to "smash" Phelps & the US team. Much was said about Phelps putting those quote in the back of his locker, looking at them every day & determining to prove them wrong. You will have people that don't believe in you & your business. Sometimes they feel it is their duty to tell you that you will not make it (isn't that kind). If it works for you, use it as fuel to propel your business. If that doesn't work for you, ignore them completely. Limit your time around negative people!
- Put forth the extra effort even when you're not sure it will matter - The seventh gold for Phelps will surely be remembered as among the "most memorable moments" of the games. Coming from behind, thinking that he wasn't going to get the gold, Phelps decided to give it all he had & add another half stroke. While his competition coasted into the wall Phelps' extra effort won him the gold by .01 seconds. Are you doing more than your competition? Are putting in that extra effort that is needed to push your business forward to success like you've never thought possible?
- Remember your teammates in success - "Without the help of my teammates this isn't possible," Phelps was quoted as saying after one of their many wins. Three of the eight golds that he won were relays with his teammates. Never forget to thank your teammates & those that help in your business. Sincere thanks & giving will always come back to bless you.
The Olympics are over & it's back to normal life again. But I'm going to keep these five keys before me, spurring me on to my gold-medal success. I hope to see you at the top!