Finding success – a game of inches

In the world of top-level competitive sport people talk about winners and losers. Everybody remembers a winner but it’s often difficult to remember the loser. Is it so simple to refer to winning and losing in such a way or is there more to the journey than that? For sure that’s just what it is, a journey.

Every season in the pressured world of Premier League football two transfer windows signal the start of a frenzy to acquire new talent that is often viewed by all involved in the game, from club staff to supporters alike, as a means for finding that elusive edge on competitors. What is certain is that winning environments are created from more than this and along the way failure will have played its part.

Equally what is certain is that success can arrive in different ways and at different times. For those who achieve it and maintain it often for them continued success has:

  • An Integrity
  • A conscience
  • Recognition of the role of significant others
  • Strong and empathetic leadership
  • Acceptance of a challenge
  • Ability to persist with setbacks
  • An ability to understand the role of talent

There is far more to consider here than the above. But what is equally certain is that the best environments whether in sports or business do something different or better that separates them from the rest.  In environments where there is an ability to keep ahead of the competition, they are able to place a perspective on the part that failure plays in their journey to succeeding.

Bill Walsh of San Francisco 49er fame aptly stated that a part of pursuing and achieving very ambitious goals: “…..even when you have an organisation brimming with talent, victory is not always under your control. Almost always, your road to victory goes through a place called failure.”

What is important to consider is the role of ‘mindset’ in the journey to success although that’s the subject for a further Blog.

Consider the following to aid influencing your mindset:

  • Developing a hard work ethic to develop your natural talent
  • Talent alone is often insufficient
  • Keep a control on negative thoughts as they can allow emotions to take control
  • Storing moments of success related to particular times can help here as these can produce strong positive affirmations and remember ‘good bits’
  • Use the success of others to inspire you
  • Always accept the challenge – take it on ‘full in the face’
  • Accept failure – it’s not your enemy – make it a friend

For further proof of the ability to use failure as a road to success look up the early careers of Henry Ford, Oprah Winfrey, Bill Gates, Walt Disney and Michael Jordan. It provides fascinating reading!

Please feel free to comment on this Blog. Andy Murray sums both failure and success up really clearly by stating “never let failure go to your heart…never let success go to your head.”

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