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English: Los Angeles Lakers Magic Johnson

English: Los Angeles Lakers Magic Johnson (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


When NBA Hall-of-Famer Magic Johnson first came onto the public scene as a college player for Michigan State, his enthusiastic celebrations and gleeful high-fives after every big play had him labeled a show-off who was disrespectful to his opponents.

But his coach, Jud Heathcote defended his star player stoutly, “He’s like that every day in practice – every day.”

Magic wasn’t putting down his opponents, he just loved playing basketball and he expressed his enthusiasm every single day.

What about you?  Is there something that you should be doing every single day?

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You don’t just walk into a room and gain credibility.

It takes time, consistency and sustained excellence.

You build credibility brick by brick, year by year, interaction by interaction.

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Moving up seems to be a popular aim.

Lofty ambitions, climbing the ladder, flying high, reaching for the stars.

We all want to end up in a destination that’s over and above our current situation.

So where do you start?

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I realise that this title doesn’t look good, so please bear with me.

Hopefully it’s obvious that I don’t mean be a fire-lighter literally.  I’m talking here about the fire or passion that people need to achieve a particular task or goal.  The inspiration that drives great performance, the dreams that great people pursue with enthusiasm and vigour.

No matter who you are, you are surrounded by people who influence you, and you in turn influence others.

Unfortunately, some of us are fire-fighters, dousing the flames of enthusiasm through well-meaning, or sometimes just mean-spirited words of discouragement.

Thankfully, we also have the opportunity to help to light flames in the hearts of others and there are a few ways in which we can do that.

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Jim Stynes at the 150 Heroes function

Image via Wikipedia

Unfortunately, at the young age of 45, Jim has passed away after a long, brave battle with cancer, but his legacy lives on.  He was a truly inspirational individual and our thoughts and prayers are with his wife, Sam, and two children.

From his humble beginnings as a Gaelic footballer trying to learn how to play Aussie rules to his recent courageous battle with cancer, Jim consistently displayed traits that we can all learn from.

His list of awards as a footballer is very impressive, winning the coveted Brownlow Medal as the Best and Fairest player in the AFL in 1991, 4 time club B&F winner, 2 time All-Australian, AFL Hall of Famer and member of the Melbourne Football Club Team of the Century.

But as with most great people, his achievements reach far beyond the sporting field, so what principles can we learn from the life of Jim Stynes?

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The Buffet at Langhams


I recently had the opportunity to indulge in the fantastic buffet at the Langham Restaurant in Melbourne (thanks boss).   

Being a person who likes his food, I was reminded of the following analogy from Brian Tracy’s excellent book on Goals.  The analogy is based around the idea of long-term gratification.  

You see, many people treat life like an a la carte restaurant. They eat limited portions from a limited menu and then have to pay afterwards.  

Alternatively, successful people treat life like a buffet. They pay the price at the very start and then can gorge themselves on everything that is on offer.  

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Abraham Lincoln once said, “I never had a policy; I have just tried to do my very best each and every day.”

After over 10 years with my current employer, I will soon be leaving to start an incredibly exciting role.  One of the things that has surprised me as I come to the end of this chapter of my life, has been the number of people who have come up to me to express their appreciation for the positive influence that I have had on them.  I’m not writing this to boast, but to highlight that I didn’t fully comprehend the impact of doing what I thought was the right thing over the past ten years.

What have I learned from this experience?

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English: Los Angeles Lakers Magic Johnson and ...

Image via Wikipedia

Growing up, I loved basketball and as a Boston Celtics fan, Larry Bird was my hero.

He was a ruthless competitor who wanted to win at all costs.  He ended his career with three NBA titles and three MVP awards.  He also played in 12 All-Star games, testament to his consistency.

Whilst he was 6 foot 9 inches tall, he certainly wasn’t blessed with the same athletic abilities of many of his peers.  He knew that talent alone wasn’t going to get the job done, so he found other ways to get to the top.

What can we learn from Larry Bird?

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One of the things that I would like to do with this blog is to share the stories of inspirational people and identify some of the traits that we can learn and emulate in our own lives. 

The first person that I would like to discuss is Mother Teresa.  What can we learn from this great humanitarian?

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So far we’ve had A is for Attitude and B is for Behaviour and now I would like to share what I would consider to be an equally critical element of success, C is for Consistency.

A question that I often like to ask is who would you rather be, Dexy’s Midnight Runners or the Beatles?  Who are Dexy’s Midnight Runners?  They are the one hit wonders who gave us the classic song, “Come on Eileen.”  If you’re still none the wiser, look them up on YouTube, it’s one of the most memorable songs of all time with one of the dodgiest videos ever. 

Of course, you’ve all heard of the Beatles and their fame is renowned because they were able so sustain their achievements over a period of time, not just once.

If you want to be successful in life, you need to find a way to ensure that you can sustain your mind-set and a set of actions over a long period of time.

What are some of the keys to maintaining a consistent level of performance? 

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