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With the Rio 2016 Olympics coming to a close we have watched in awe at the feats of the thousands of athletes such as Usain Bolt, Michael Phelps and Mo Farah who have shown great expertise and resolve to reach the summit of athletic accomplishment.
We were reflecting on what it takes to become one of those world-class athletes, capable of competing at that level, and we realized that there were fundamental lessons for anyone who wants to be successful in their life.
The secret of how these world-beating athletes became world class can be discovered in the application of two essential notions:
Aspiration and Persistence.
You see you don’t just wake up one day and you are an Olympic athlete. It will have all started many years before where a seed of aspiration was planted; they will have been inspired by someone or something into wanting to succeed to be the best.
So you have to start with that aspiration, you have to want it enough but you may know of people who have or have had big dreams yet they don’t ever seem to make it. So wanting it is one thing, what you then need is persistence to get it. Your aspiration will give you the intention and direction toward what you want and then your persistence will be the thing that gets it.
Think about those Olympic athletes, they make it look so easy yet what you may forget about is the unseen years of practice, training early mornings and late nights whatever the weather. Falling down and getting back up, recovery from injury, winning and losing…this is where the persistence comes into it’s own.
Somebody who has aspiration without persistence will never achieve; they will be the dreamers. You need a formidable mixture of both to be world class.
So what do we mean by aspiration and persistence? Let’s gain a deeper understanding of what these are.
Aspiration is driven by three important things:
Your initial intention is gained through your dreams, hopes and wishes. The things that you want in life, all of the things that you can imagine that are possible for you. Those dreams will lay down an intention.
After the intention is laid will come Direction. Direction will appear from narrowing down the potential possibilities of your dreams, hopes and wishes into what you really want. You create a clear picture of what you want, where you want to get to.
Once you gain direction from your intention that will then direct and drive your Focus. Your Focus is your in the moment concentration on the specific things that you want and you will use your energy to get,
Persistence is also driven by three important things:
- Setting Goals/Outcomes
- Take Action
You need to set SMART Goals/Outcomes from which to create the plan that will direct the energy from your Aspiration. Without a clearly defined plan and set of outcomes to guide you your energy will be scattered.
Once you have set the outcomes and the plan you must take massive action and that needs to be the action that will get you your goals. A goal without action is just a dream.
When taking action to succeed you will need determination. The road to success is not a smooth, straight line, as many self-development gurus would have us believe. It has twists and turns, potholes and dead ends. Everyone encounters challenges on the road to getting what they want and it calls upon single-minded determination to do what it takes rather than giving up. This is when the aspiration can assist and fuel the persistence.
So if you want success on an Olympic scale and to be the champion of your life you need to have Aspiration that through a clear intention will give you direction that generates a laser-like focus leading to Persistence through setting goals and outcomes that you then take action to achieve through determination.
As Eleanor Roosevelt said, “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” and once you have that Aspiration and you combine it with Persistence, you will have discovered what makes a true champion and how to get the life that you want.
If you would like to learn powerful tools and techniques to become a true champion of your life, take a look at our NLP Training Courses