Success – 5 thoughts and why you should be a sweet potato

The New Zealand modern day rugby teams mantra is “No D**kheads” and for me it’s so simple and perfect. Don’t be a d**khead. Greater emphasis is placed on strength of character rather than raw ability. Many exceptionally talented young New Zealanders have been passed over for the international team due to how they conduct themselves. Above all a responsibility to represent the jersey to the best of your ability without compromising the team values. Read Legacy by James Kerr, it’s amazing.

For me being successful is everything. As you grow your measure for success must also, if 5 years when I was leaving college someone told me I would be in the career position I am now I couldn’t have imagined it. My Salary has increased 8 times in the last 5 years and only last week I requested a 9th as my company attempt to make me permanent 13 months ahead of schedule – I’ve made an impact. But is any of that success? No. Money is money and how much you have means nothing to me. Imagine you have a school reunion tomorrow with all of your old class mates, friends, enemies, the rest. When asked what have you being doing with yourself will the first line be: well in 2016 I’ve made €X how about you? I really hope not. But what would you say? What are the points you want to make about yourself to people to showcase your success. If you’re fresh out and you can’t answer that, it’s time to act, time to be a success!

“The Sweet Potato does not need to tell you how sweet it is” – Legacy James Kerr

Now I’m not saying be a sweet potato but what a humble b*****d of a vegetable.

Beit life or training I like to remember the following:

1) Know Thyself – the Ancient Greek aphorism “Gnothi Seauton”. The proverb applies to those whose boasts exceed what they are. It is a warning to pay no attention to the opinions of the multitude. It’s easy to get caught up in histeria and think you are better than you are, equally it’s easy to get caught up in negativity and think worse than you are. Pay no attention to the opinions of others and instead use honest self assessment to know yourself better than anyone else can. Why do you go to the gym? 9/10 people will say to get/keep fit. But would you go as much if there was no instagram or snapchat, would you go if you had no holidays coming up, would you go if there were no competitions, would you go if it was just you and would only ever be you in your basement? There’s nothing wrong with saying no to any of those questions, your still in the gym getting fit and healthy which is the main thing but have you ever really questioned yourself do you really know why you do anything! You’ve got to know yourself why you do it. Know yourself better than anyone else and you will be successful, don’t float through life never knowing you. Although I’ve many reasons for being in the gym (as most of us do), I know myself enough to know why the answer to all of those questions is and always will be Yes. I go to the gym because when your pressing two 55Kg Dumbbells your mind is so focused it can’t think about anything else, for those few seconds I’m free.

2) Winners Win – successful people win. I speak a lot to people about winning because it’s so misunderstood. The bit people fail to comprehend is that being the best and being a winner are two very different things. How many times in sport do we see the better team losing to a grittier more determined less skilled team.  It’s frequent, some people use the “Form is temporary, class is permanent” phrase. I don’t, it’s an excuse for the best team on paper underperforming. Winning is everything, you do what you need to to win, winners adapt, losers hold on to excuses. Remember No D**kheads, don’t be a cheat. Can you win everything all of the time, no. But while you’re in the mix remember winners win.  I’ve never aimed to be the best, but I’ve developed a habit of winning.

3) Start Again – this is another legacy quote which comes from Richie McCaw. Its humbling, no matter what you have done in life each day you start again. Everything has a short memory, anything you’ve done, anything you’ve achieved, after a game is over, a competition is over, season etc. It’s done and you start again from nothing. Remember these two words and you will be a success. Yesterday is gone, it’s always today moving forward.

4) Candles – your candle does not burn less bright by lighting others. Share your knowledge with anyone that wants it. Be friendly and approachable in life. Everybody whether in the gym or in life is at a different stage, help those below you and open your mind to those above you. Be a leader and a friend. If in a position of power delegate and help your team to expand, the key to being a great leader is breaking the forced dependence on you. Be a person people want to follow, not a person that forces people to follow.

5) Small Days – Success is achieved on the small days, most days are small. It’s your weekly grind. Big days if you’re lucky enough to get them come once or twice a year. It’s the competition day, it’s championship, it’s the interview, it’s the sales pitch, it’s your chance to kick to the next level. Big days make you nervous, you’re outside your comfort zone but you know your here for a reason, you’re the best but you can choke even after doing everything right. See winners above. However most people don’t get themselves into that position because they’ve skipped the small days. small days are are the insignificant days that you can never account for it your life, what did you do on May 15th? April 4th? June 27th? July 19th? I don’t know what I did on any of those days, just regular days, small days. To be successful you need to use these small days wisely to build towards your goal, learn something everyday, the things you learn now are setting you up for big days you don’t even know you want yet. Expand every aspect of your life!

Hope you enjoyed and remember be a sweet potato!




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