“Sons,” he would tell my three brothers and me, “don’t worry about whether you’re better than somebody else, but never cease trying to be the best you can become. You have control over that; the other you don’t.” Time spent comparing myself to others, he cautioned, was time wasted. “Johnny, work hard to get as good as you can get,” he’d say. “Do that and you may call yourself a success. Do less and you’ve fallen short.”
(John Wooden, Wooden on Leadership, p. 6.)
Say to yourself . . . I want to reinvent my life, explode my business, and skyrocket my income. Therefore, I must always push myself to become my personal best.
Now, I know from personal experience how very easily I can be deceived by my own exaggerated opinion of myself. I often find myself thinking that I am doing my best. But I must always ask myself this self-coaching question: Can I better my best? The answer is always Yes, I can better my best. This is the true attitude for ambition that is defined as “the desire to be the best at what I do” in the dictionary. In my seminars, I often say, “I can teach you the tools for success, but you must have a personal ambition to succeed.”
I want to become the best that I can be. What about you? Compete with yourself by becoming your best; then compete against yourself and compare against only yourself.
CONFIDENCE COACHING SOLUTION:
Focus on becoming your personal best
instead of wasting your time comparing and competing.
I watched an interview with Shaquille O’Neal. When asked about being a role model for kids, he said, “I don’t want to be a role model because then you are playing a role like an actor. I want to be a real model. I am a real person who makes mistakes, but I am working at getting better. I want people to see a real model and say I want to be better than Shaq.”
Put a picture on the wall of somebody you admire and keep saying “I’m going to be better than that person.” That person becomes a Confidence Solution example to inspire you to become better than you are.
Living at Your Peak Every Day
Richard Stengel, Time magazine editor and author of Mandela’s Way, traveled with Nelson Mandela almost every day for three years. In the book’s first chapter, “Courage Is Not the Absence of Fear,” he reveals one of Mandela’s key lessons of life:
“One had to put up a front. Sometimes it is only through putting up a brave front that you discover true courage. Sometimes the front is courage.”
He concludes the chapter with this great statement:
Mandela’s highest praise for someone he considered courageous is, “He did very well.” By that he does not mean that the fellow was a dramatic hero or that he risked his life in a great endeavor, but that, day in and day out, he remained steady under trying circumstances. That, day in and day out, he resisted giving in to fear and anxiety. All of us are capable of that kind of bravery.
Each new day presents us with new opportunities, challenges, problems to solve, and people to encounter. When these “life issues” present themselves, you want to be at your best.
The Difference: Being Your Best
What is the difference between those who perform at their best and win, and those who perform and lose? What is the difference between the person who was raised in the best family atmosphere but ends up with no job, and the person who is raised in poverty and in an abusive home, like I was, yet is able to travel the world, write books, and help millions of people unleash their potential?
The difference comes down to people’s ability to maximize their internal and external communication and take action to produce the results they want in life.
Communication is the major force for empowering you to be at your best. Other than writing, there are two types of communication:
1. Internal — Self-talk in your mind.
2. External — Words you say out loud.
How you communicate internally and externally is a tool you can use to always be at your peak, day in and day out. You use your skills to move yourself toward living every day at your peak so that you will always perform at your best in every circumstance, challenge, and situation that arises.
This article was excerpted with permission from the book:
The Confidence Solution: Reinvent Yourself, Explode Your Business, Skyrocket Your Income
by Keith Johnson.
Reprinted with permission of the publisher, Jeremy P. Tarcher/Penguin, a member of Penguin Group (USA). ©2011. www.us.PenguinGroup.com.
About the Author
Dr. Keith Johnson known as America's #1 Confidence Coach, has spent the past fifteen years successfully training more than 120,000 leaders how to maximize their leadership potential and effectiveness. One of the premier speakers on the subjects of leadership and confidence building, he has spoken worldwide including in Japan, Singapore, Malaysia, Africa, India, Spain, and throughout the United States. Dr. Keith is the founder and CEO of Confidence International, and speaks at many organizations, entrepreneur groups, churches, and events each year. Visit his website at http://keithjohnson.tv/