I constantly study other people as I believe there is something useful you can learn from everybody, whether they succeed or they fail. I was recently watching a video of a businessman named Dan Pena who was narrating an incident where he was having a discussion with a man who had been the Hollywood Mega Star, Tom Cruise’s personal assistant. Out of curiosity, Dan asked him, what working with Tom Cruise was like.
The Assistant revealed that Tom Cruise used to get up every day at 4:30 am, seven days a week. Every day, he worked as if he had never made a movie, never had a starring role and never made a PENNY in the movie business. He acted as if he had no stardom and was starting from scratch every single day even though he was a Mega Star! No wonder even after close to 40 years in the movie industry, he is still at the top of his game and one of the most bankable movie stars of all time!
How many of us get a little bit of success and start acting like we own the world? How many of us make some progress and act as if we know everything there is to know? How many of us become arrogant and start taking things lightly believing that we are now invincible? Far too many!
Let me tell you another story. Usain Bolt, the legendary sprinter dominated athletics for several years and won race after race after race at an elite level. However, he didn’t win the last race of his career. He came in third. The race was won by Justin Gatlin. Why did he lose? For those who think Bolt lost because he was aging, it would be interesting to know that Gatlin is 5 years older than Bolt.
Here is why he lost. One of Bolt’s long time train partners reported that for all of his competitive career, Usain Bolt practiced so much that he vomited by the end of every practice session. When it come to preparing for his final race, however, Bolt figured that all of the competitors were people had beaten easily in the past and didn’t train as hard. And BAM! The moment he lowered his standards even for a few days, he got beat!
As long as Bolt took his competition seriously and thought of himself as a beginner even after being a champion, he continued to win race after race. But the moment he took his training and his opponents lightly, he lost out on a first place finish would have been a perfect end to a glorious career.
So, what is it that you can learn from the two examples above and how can you apply it to your life? I leave the interpretation of the same up to you!
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