“Life’s not about how hard of a hit you can give… it’s about how many you can take, and still keep moving forward.”
― Sylvester Stallone, Rocky Balboa
The Philippines’ Gilas Basketball team made history 2 days ago by giving the country its first victory in 36 years at the FIBA World Cup of basketball. It was actually their lone victory in five games but the win felt like they won the championship and understandably so. You see, the Philippines last qualified for the FIBA world cup back in 1978 and the road they took to get back to the competition was filled with blood, sweat and tears.
For a several years, South Korea was the biggest roadblock in the Philippines’ path and in last year’s FIBA Asia qualifier, the curse has finally been lifted when the team beat the much bigger Korean team in dramatic fashion. This win started the team’s slogan, “Laban Pilipinas. Puso” which, translated, means “Fight Philippines. Heart”.
The team showed a lot of that heart in the five games they played. They took FIBA regulars and top-seeded teams like Argentina, Croatia, and Puerto Rico to the limit in nail-biting fashion. Not bad for a team who has not played in the same tournament for 36 years and certainly not bad for a team who is considered undersized and inexperienced.
They simply refused to give up and this tenacity and unwillingness to lose earned them the respect of the foreign media who even went as far as saying that the games the Philippines played were more exciting compared to that of the USA.
We all love underdogs. People who defy great odds to come out victorious. People who possess a winning attitude.
Adopting a winning attitude can make all the difference in the world. Just like the Philippine basketball team, we face adversity from time to time and having a winning attitude help us survive and overcome difficulties.
Winners do not get intimidated
No one believed that David can defeat Goliath, even his fellow Israelites. David was not a soldier at all. He was only in the battlefield to bring food to his brothers so when everyone from the Israelite’s camp chickened out to Goliath’s challenge, including Saul, everyone was surprised when David came forward.
Who would have thought that the much smaller David, armed with a sling and five stones can defeat the Philistine champion with a shot to the forehead?
Unlike David, most of us tend to get overwhelmed with the size of the problems we face. We get discouraged easily and give up right before the battle starts. A winner looks beyond the size and magnitude of the difficulties he or she faces. He or she does not run or hide from the problem but goes head-to-head with it.
Winners never quit
People who have reached success has one thing in common. They all failed multiple times before they got to where they are. The problem with most people is that they treat failure as a result. Failure is and will always be a part of the success journey for it is failure that makes us stronger and wiser. With the right attitude, you will realize that every failure we experience is actually a blessing for it is in these failures that we learn and get creative.
Winners keep fighting and every time he falls, he always picks himself up to try again until he reaches his goals.
I couldn’t count the number of times Rocky Balboa went down in the first Rocky movie. He was badly beaten, eyes shut, and nose broken but he managed to pick himself up every time to the dismay of Apollo Creed who must’ve been asking himself what the hell he had to do to finally knock this unknown out.
If you want something so bad, you have to do everything in your power to get it no matter how many times you fail.
Winners are gracious in defeat
One of the qualities of a winner is being gracious in victory but most importantly in defeat. It’s a fact of life that you cannot have it all and that you don’t always win. The big question is how you take defeat? Do you mope in one corner and cry yourself to sleep? Do you blame others?
A winner is one who takes responsibility for his actions and instead of acting like a victim or blaming others for his loss, he carefully studies where he went wrong and how he could avoid making the same mistake. The problem with most of us is that we can’t take losing properly. We waste our energy basking in defeat and self-pity when we could have used that energy more productively by trying to determine what we could do to reach our goal and not repeat the same mistake twice.
Everybody fails and as long as you gave it your best, you have nothing to be ashamed of.
Winners work hard to get good at what he does
When it comes to practice routines and workout habits, no one would ever compare to Boston Celtics legend Larry Bird. In fact, most coaches have made him the yard stick when it comes to discipline and work ethic. There have been a number of Larry Bird stories told about how he perfected his craft and I’m going to share one with you right now.
Back in his playing days as a Boston Celtic, Bird was known to come to the venue 2 hours before tip off. He would throw shot after shot after shot with only a handful of maintenance people present in the empty arena. He said he doesn’t count his shots but people who knew him would say it was around 300 and above – and that he rarely missed!
If you really want to reach a goal, you have to find ways to make yourself better in what you do if not the best. Winners prepare to win by working hard to improve the skills he need to achieve a goal. If you want to be successful in your chosen career, you need to stop watching television at night and focus your attention on how you can improve your skills in performing your function. Learn everything you need to know about your job and apply what you learned. Read books about self-improvement and success. You can’t be complacent and contented with where you are now. You need to stay hungry and look for ways to improve yourself all the time.
Leaders read and readers lead.
Winners take criticism positively
People will always try to put you down. They will always find something bad to say about you and this could either distract you from your goal, or be the fuel that drives you to perform better.
Winners take criticism constructively. Instead of reacting to what was said about him, he responds by outperforming himself and proving his critics wrong.
When you take medicine for a sickness or disease, your body is expected to respond to it because it’s a positive sign. If your body reacts to it, this could mean that the medicine is not working.
Life can throw all sort of things at you and these may hurt and bring you to your knees at times which is perfectly normal. If you are a loser, you will mope, blame others, and have a pity party but if you are a winner, you will pick yourself up and keep moving forward until your objective is achieved.
Are you a winner? Why and why not?
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