Greatness comes in all shapes and sizes, and last week I was lucky enough to spend some time with two very different sports legends, top tennis coach Rick Macci and star running back Austin Ekeler from the Los Angeles Chargers, to chat about what exactly makes someone great. Below are four of my biggest takeaways from the conversation, that can be applied by anyone who wants to pursue excellence in their own life.
We determine our ceiling
Our talent level may determine our “basement” or baseline in terms of performance, but our knowledge and desire are what determine our ceiling or potential. It is up to us to determine where our skills fit the best and from there, our strategy should focus on maximizing our abilities. By placing our intention on having the right mindset and being consistent, we create more acceleration toward our goals.
We have to face challenges head-on if we want to get better
Things are not always going to go smoothly for us, which means that learning to be persistent and continually getting back up after getting knocked down is essential for progress. We have to be accountable for ourselves and not expect anyone to solve our problems for us, but that does not mean we shouldn’t be asking for help along the way.
Accessibility is key to brand-building
We have the desire to be connected to people, brands, things, and ideas that we relate to most. That drive for connectivity places an added importance on giving people effective and rewarding ways to discover us and access the content that we create. We must always concentrate on providing value first, and doing that consistently and persistently, knowing we’ll get value in the long term by building a community.
Mental toughness and physical toughness go hand-in-hand
Much like a professional athlete, most of us need to be able to perform when we’re not feeling our best mentally or physically. We can’t let minor obstacles “take us out of the game” or derail our plans. Instead, we must connect with our sources of motivation and inspiration to give us an extra push when we need it.