February 9, 2011

Sporting links to Business Success

professional swimmer

Since the beginning of 2011 I’ve been upping the stakes on the fitness front – more swimming, more tennis, more detoxing. And it’s great. I feel energised, positive and focussed to a much higher level than when I’m desk-bound all day.

Last week my swim partner and I changed the timing of our training session. We went from 6.30am (a proper discipline for me – especially when it’s still dark outside) to 12.15am. I had thought we would meet, as usual in the foyer of the swimming pool, however, I quickly realised that he’d arrived early and had just got started. By the time I joined him in the pool he was 16 lengths ahead! A significant lead when we were only doing 50 lengths total that day.

So, no time to delay, I jumped in and got started. My first 5 lengths were filled with thoughts of ‘got to swim faster, got to catch up’. And so I pushed myself and really felt the burn as I focussed on lapping him every 10 lengths instead of my usual every 14.

After about 10 minutes I began to think, ‘you know, I’m focussing on the wrong goal. It’s unreasonable to be referencing myself against a person who started 16 lengths ahead of me. I should be concentrating on my style, my breathing, completing my goal and achieving a personal best.’

And this got me thinking about business success. Sometimes the people whose businesses have been established longer and appear to run so effectively inspire me to move forward faster and to innovate. And sometimes, their persistent emails promoting their next teleclass, next program and next fool-proof system drive me to lose my sense of pride in my own achievements and my own game.

Experience is good, and knowledge is valuable, but it’s a positive and persistent attitude that will keep us driving our business success forward. It’s your journey, your vision and your race with your own expectations.

Me, I’ve resolved to remind myself often that my vision is unique to me and that a daily personal best is a pretty big victory.

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