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Do You Have the Will To Succeed?

Do You Have the Will To Succeed?
    Photo credit: JD Hancock (CC BY 2.0)

    Earlier this summer, I was watching a bit of the NHL (National Hockey League) entry draft on TV and one of the young hockey players drafted this year by the Florida Panthers team was a young man named Rocco Grimaldi.

    Grimaldi actually made sports history as he became the shortest player at five feet, six inches tall to be selected in the NHL entry draft. This is really something given that professional hockey players these days are hovering at about six feet in height on average. But Grimaldi’s lack of height has certainly not stopped him from playing well enough in the minor leagues to get the attention of NHL scouts.

    Grimaldi’s example echoes a very famous and profound quote by legendary football coach Vince Lombardi (from North American-style football, not soccer). This particular quote, which is on a motivational poster I have on my home gym wall, should be part of standard study in personal development.

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    The Famous Lombardi Quote

    Here’s the actual quote for your reference:

    “The difference between a successful person and others is not a lack of strength, not a lack of knowledge, but rather is a lack of will.”

    Coach Lombardi noticed throughout his years of coaching football that the champions are not always those who are the biggest and strongest players. We also see something similar in the business world, as those with the most education are not always the most successful either. In fact, the most successful people in many different fields are not always the most gifted in terms of size or knowledge. But what they do have is the will to succeed, which more than makes up for their lack of natural assets.

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    Examples Of Great Wills That Have Created Legacies

    Wayne Gretzky

    Another great example from sports is Wayne Gretzky, often acknowledged as the greatest hockey player ever. He was nowhere near the most imposing player on the ice in terms of size, but his intense will to excel in the game since early childhood enabled him to make up for his lack of bulk. The skills he developed — including his skating style — made him a very difficult player for the bigger guys on the ice to bodycheck. In fact, they often referred to him as a very ‘slippery’ skater with a unique way to dodge bigger players. Add on his incredible scoring abilities and it’s no wonder why he was called ‘The Great One’.

    Bill Gates

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    One of the best examples from the world of business to demonstrate Coach Lombardi’s quote is Bill Gates. He dropped out of college to eventually start Microsoft. He didn’t have the most acquired knowledge but had enough computer skills plus his enormous will and foresight to change the tech world. He made up for his lack of business knowledge by recruiting people who did have expertise in other areas needed to build a successful company. The rest as they say, is history.

    Terry Fox

    After having a leg amputated due to cancer, Terry Fox was not exactly the most likely person to be a long distance runner. But because of his incredible will to raise awareness for cancer, his ‘Marathon of Hope’, which was a brave attempt to run across Canada, is now legendary. Terry Fox started his journey from the east coast and never made it across Canada. He got as far as northern Ontario when his cancer finally defeated him. However, his inspiration resulted in annual events worldwide that have raised millions of dollars for cancer research ever since.

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    Applying Lombardi’s Quote to Your Life

    When looking at your own life and goals, don’t be disheartened if you are lacking in a few qualities such as strength or knowledge. Countless people like Wayne Gretzky, Bill Gates and Terry Fox have achieved great success, leaving lasting impressions in society despite having some shortcomings. Natural ability (and even acquired knowledge) can only take somebody so far. Without the additional willpower to do whatever it takes to become successful, these assets can’t be utilized to their potential. This is why many gifted or well-educated individuals still fall short of their goals.

    You can apply Coach Lombardi’s wisdom by developing the will to work hard and be fully committed towards your goals. This will compensate for any perceived shortcomings that you may have. Strong willpower enables you to endure and persevere the rougher parts of your journey.

    This is what Rocco Grimaldi did as he kept working on his hockey skills — even though he was probably told by many naysayers that he was too small to be a professional hockey player.

    The will to succeed can make all the difference. Don’t suffer from a lack of it if you want to achieve success in what you do.

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    Last Updated on January 21, 2020

    The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

    The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

    Creating a vision for your life might seem like a frivolous, fantastical waste of time, but it’s not: creating a compelling vision of the life you want is actually one of the most effective strategies for achieving the life of your dreams. Perhaps the best way to look at the concept of a life vision is as a compass to help guide you to take the best actions and make the right choices that help propel you toward your best life.

    your vision of where or who you want to be is the greatest asset you have

      Why You Need a Vision

      Experts and life success stories support the idea that with a vision in mind, you are more likely to succeed far beyond what you could otherwise achieve without a clear vision. Think of crafting your life vision as mapping a path to your personal and professional dreams. Life satisfaction and personal happiness are within reach. The harsh reality is that if you don’t develop your own vision, you’ll allow other people and circumstances to direct the course of your life.

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      How to Create Your Life Vision

      Don’t expect a clear and well-defined vision overnight—envisioning your life and determining the course you will follow requires time, and reflection. You need to cultivate vision and perspective, and you also need to apply logic and planning for the practical application of your vision. Your best vision blossoms from your dreams, hopes, and aspirations. It will resonate with your values and ideals, and will generate energy and enthusiasm to help strengthen your commitment to explore the possibilities of your life.

      What Do You Want?

      The question sounds deceptively simple, but it’s often the most difficult to answer. Allowing yourself to explore your deepest desires can be very frightening. You may also not think you have the time to consider something as fanciful as what you want out of life, but it’s important to remind yourself that a life of fulfillment does not usually happen by chance, but by design.

      It’s helpful to ask some thought-provoking questions to help you discover the possibilities of what you want out of life. Consider every aspect of your life, personal and professional, tangible and intangible. Contemplate all the important areas, family and friends, career and success, health and quality of life, spiritual connection and personal growth, and don’t forget about fun and enjoyment.

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      Some tips to guide you:

      • Remember to ask why you want certain things
      • Think about what you want, not on what you don’t want.
      • Give yourself permission to dream.
      • Be creative. Consider ideas that you never thought possible.
      • Focus on your wishes, not what others expect of you.

      Some questions to start your exploration:

      • What really matters to you in life? Not what should matter, what does matter.
      • What would you like to have more of in your life?
      • Set aside money for a moment; what do you want in your career?
      • What are your secret passions and dreams?
      • What would bring more joy and happiness into your life?
      • What do you want your relationships to be like?
      • What qualities would you like to develop?
      • What are your values? What issues do you care about?
      • What are your talents? What’s special about you?
      • What would you most like to accomplish?
      • What would legacy would you like to leave behind?

      It may be helpful to write your thoughts down in a journal or creative vision board if you’re the creative type. Add your own questions, and ask others what they want out of life. Relax and make this exercise fun. You may want to set your answers aside for a while and come back to them later to see if any have changed or if you have anything to add.

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      What Would Your Best Life Look Like?

      Describe your ideal life in detail. Allow yourself to dream and imagine, and create a vivid picture. If you can’t visualize a picture, focus on how your best life would feel. If you find it difficult to envision your life 20 or 30 years from now, start with five years—even a few years into the future will give you a place to start. What you see may surprise you. Set aside preconceived notions. This is your chance to dream and fantasize.

      A few prompts to get you started:

      • What will you have accomplished already?
      • How will you feel about yourself?
      • What kind of people are in your life? How do you feel about them?
      • What does your ideal day look like?
      • Where are you? Where do you live? Think specifics, what city, state, or country, type of community, house or an apartment, style and atmosphere.
      • What would you be doing?
      • Are you with another person, a group of people, or are you by yourself?
      • How are you dressed?
      • What’s your state of mind? Happy or sad? Contented or frustrated?
      • What does your physical body look like? How do you feel about that?
      • Does your best life make you smile and make your heart sing? If it doesn’t, dig deeper, dream bigger.

      It’s important to focus on the result, or at least a way-point in your life. Don’t think about the process for getting there yet—that’s the next stepGive yourself permission to revisit this vision every day, even if only for a few minutes. Keep your vision alive and in the front of your mind.

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      Plan Backwards

      It may sound counter-intuitive to plan backwards rather than forwards, but when you’re planning your life from the end result, it’s often more useful to consider the last step and work your way back to the first. This is actually a valuable and practical strategy for making your vision a reality.

      • What’s the last thing that would’ve had to happen to achieve your best life?
      • What’s the most important choice you would’ve had to make?
      • What would you have needed to learn along the way?
      • What important actions would you have had to take?
      • What beliefs would you have needed to change?
      • What habits or behaviors would you have had to cultivate?
      • What type of support would you have had to enlist?
      • How long will it have taken you to realize your best life?
      • What steps or milestones would you have needed to reach along the way?

      Now it’s time to think about your first step, and the next step after that. Ponder the gap between where you are now and where you want to be in the future. It may seem impossible, but it’s quite achievable if you take it step-by-step.

      It’s important to revisit this vision from time to time. Don’t be surprised if your answers to the questions, your technicolor vision, and the resulting plans change. That can actually be a very good thing; as you change in unforeseeable ways, the best life you envision will change as well. For now, it’s important to use the process, create your vision, and take the first step towards making that vision a reality.

      Featured photo credit: Matt Noble via unsplash.com

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