We all have a stone portrait of success and how we should get there. Study this, apply that, and then…
That’s what Emil Zatopek would hear about his running style.
His arms would dangle like they had no bones, his face would shapeshift with pain and his footwork… Let’s just say his running wasn’t easy on the eyes.
- He went on to break 4 world records in one race,
- Held 8 world records at the same time,
- And broke 18 by the time his career ended.
People will look to the time you wasted, the steps you skipped or the qualifications you do not hold to deem you unworthy of those dreams you refuse to let go of.
On paper they’ll be right, but that’s just on paper.
You’ll Compensate Your Way To Success
I’m aware of how preachy this sounds, but what you don’t have is really, really less of a problem than you think. Every pebble looks like a mountain when looked at too close.
What Zatopek lacked in running technique he made up for with ruthless, repetitive training. Out of necessity he focused on one thing, which eventually fathered what we now call interval training.
To use an example you’re very familiar with, Steve Jobs didn’t focus on coding, yet his dream saw the day.
Like his, your dreams can be broken into 3 indispensable components. Of them,
- You’ll never be perfect at one,
- You will be good at one,
- And there’s a third one that will require you to be the very best at.
Your job is to determine which of the components of your dream is within your reach and excel at it. To recognise this component, think of what made you susceptible to be attracted to your dream in the first place.
Excel at it and the right circumstances will collude to make the rest happen.
Let’s say for example that you wanted to launch a sports agency. From the top of my mind I’d say you’d need money skills, people skills and a great understanding of contracts. Now let’s say you were not so good with people.
If you decided to develop good money skills and a perfect understanding of contracts, your dream would still see the day, athletes would do the mouth-to-mouth job for you and the right staff would be attracted to you. All without you having the very best people skills.
Run Your Own Race
- Divide your dream into 3 indispensable components.
- Pick one you could be perfect at.
- And become just that: Perfect.
During your race, you will notice the people around you doing it different. They’ll swing their arms right, keep their chin up or land on their toes. Ignore them.
You may never beat them at their game, which is good news because they’ll never beat you at your game. For all his boasting about being great, the crocodile will never excel out of water as he would in it.
The likelihood of you reaching your peak is hinged on your ability to focus on your own strengths. Run your own race.
— I’m waving your flag.