The Secret to Success.
I get regularly asked questions that go something like this: “Wayne, you’ve met some of the world’s best coaches, some of the world’s best athletes and worked with some of the world’s best sporting teams and corporate brains. If you had to identify one thing – just one thing – which you believe was the secret to success, what would it be? Can you identify one success factor that you see common across the great performers, the great artists, the great coaches, the great corporate leaders, the great athletes and the great people that you meet around the world?”
And the answer I give is, “Yes, I do.”
And the second part of the answer is, “And so do you.”
We’ve all had the talk – what I call “The Talk.”
So you might’ve been a 12 year old football player and your father, or your mother, or your coach, or your teacher said, “Listen, Timmy, if you train hard, if you dedicate yourself completely to realising the full extent of your potential, if you’re uncompromisingly committed to being the best that you can be, you can do anything.”
You might’ve had that talk at school.
You might’ve been a 15 year old history student and your history teacher said, “Susie, you’ve really got a lot of talent in the area of history, and if you commit yourself and study hard, if you give everything you have to studying history, if you’re uncompromising about your commitment to learning and understanding history and developing an extensive knowledge base of history, you could be an outstanding historian.”
We’ve all had The Talk at work, in sport, in school; we’ve all had a talk like that from someone we admire or respect, someone who cared about us, someone who wanted us to realise our potential and be all we could be.
The problem is we don’t act on it.
It’s not about Knowledge.
My father, who I loved very dearly and who is no longer with us, would often say, “Knowing and not doing is the same as not knowing.”
And I think it’s a great phrase because so many people, so many coaches, teachers, parents and athletes already know the secret to success.
It isn’t buying a secret series of DVDs or going to a weekend workshop – you already know it. That’s not the problem.
The knowledge of success is not the issue.
We already know what it takes to be successful.
Commitment, dedication, never giving up, believing in yourself – any one of a number of great motivational speakers and talented people have told you that over and over again.
The difference is you don’t act. The difference is we don’t grab those things we know are inherent to being successful in whatever area of life we want to be successful and put it into practice.
The Challenge for You.
So my challenge to you is this:
From this moment, pick one thing in your life, pick one aspect of your coaching or one aspect of your performance as an athlete that you will be completely committed and dedicated to.
It could be, as an athlete, being completely committed to your recovery program – every day getting plenty of sleep; always rehydrating and refuelling appropriately; always stretching, doing self-massage and taking care of your body after you train.
It could be, as a coach, being totally committed to time management so that you’ll never be late, you’ll always be early, you’ll always be the first one there, you’ll always be prepared.
Adopt that secret to success mentality just to one aspect of your life and you’ll see a funny thing will happen.
There’s a great phrase that I love which says, “The way you do anything is the way you’ll do everything.”
If you commit to changing just one aspect of your life, one aspect of your coaching, one aspect of your performance, very soon that will spread like a virus – you’ll find that other parts of your coaching, other parts of your athletic performance and preparation will also become successful.
All takes that one aspect of commitment – committing to one part of what you do to get started.
Remember…you don’t have to be great to start but, you have to start….to be great.
There’s a great old Chinese expression that says, “The journey of a 1,000 miles begins with the first step.”
Take the first step.