BELIEVE PART I
“Confidence is at the root of so many attractive qualities, a sense of humor, a sense of style, a willingness to be who you are no matter what anyone else might think or say…”
– Wentworth Miller
Andrew Carnegie, the leader in the expansion of the steel industry during the late 1800’s and early 1900’s understood the power of serving others. He was the Bill Gates and Warren Buffett of his time. In 1901, Carnegie sold his steel company for $480 million dollars (that’s $370 billion today), yet for nearly the last 20 years of his life, he had given 90% of his income away to charities, foundations, and universities. He also did something possibly even more philanthropic. During his booming years of pioneering the expansion of the steel industry, he recruited a young writer named Napoleon Hill to follow him and his wealthy business associates around and observe their behaviors. Carnegie’s goal was to have Hill write a book to be shared with the world on what traits, habits, and thought processes that were practiced by the wealthiest and most successful people at that time in America. He wanted to share this knowledge with the world to hopefully help others be the best version of themselves.
After studying these behaviors for 20 years, Hill was able to drill down to one common thread that these successful people possessed. After capturing these observations, he wrote one of the best selling business books of all time (70 million copies sold world wide) entitled Think and Grow Rich. What was the common trait that these individuals had?…self belief.
Hill introduced a concept he called, “The Law of Success,” which is often called, “The Law of Attraction.” The Law of Attraction has been written about and shared by many (see The Secret, by Rhonda Byrne or The Magic of Thinking Big, by David Schwartz). It is the philosophy that what Hill famously said, “Whatever the mind can conceive, and believe, it can achieve.” People who have unwavering conviction and belief in themselves, usually are the ones sitting on top of the food chain of life. We all are going to hear “no” and sometimes fall flat on our face. However, the ones that do not let these setbacks detract them, but continue to have unwavering faith in themselves, ultimately find success.
There are few athletes that exemplify the power of self belief more than Derek Jeter. One can go on and on about his accomplishments – he’s a 5 time World Champion, clutch performer in the post season, and Yankee record holder in many categories, but there are 2 Jeter stories that I love the most that deal with self belief (gotta represent #2 for The Captain!).
When Jeter was a young boy in Kalamazoo Michigan, he always dreamt of playing shortstop for the Yankees. He was so passionate and focused on his goal that he pinned a Yankees hat, jersey, and baseball pants up on his wall and looked at them every day for many years. Despite being from a cold state that didn’t have the best track record of generating first round draft picks, Jeter truly believed and continually visualized himself as a Yankee. Sure enough, his self confidence and belief paid off when he was selected with the 6th pick in the first round of the 1992 draft. Jeter innately practiced the power of visualization during his youth. While no one gave him a shot, he helped make his dream a reality by mentally picturing himself already accomplishing his goal.
The other story I love about Jeter had nothing to do with an amazing clutch hit or game-saving play at shortstop. It had to do with failure. During his first full season in the Minor Leagues, Jeter set a record for the highest number of errors, a whopping 56! Many scouts and even Yankee coaches considered moving him to the outfield. But Jeter stuck with it; he didn’t waver in his confidence, he put in the work and got better and better each year, later winning 5 Gold Gloves in the Majors at shortstop.
These 2 stories about Jeter teach us a few things:
- Do not limit your dreams or goals…remember: Whatever the mind can conceive and believe, it can achieve…I also love what Russell Wilson often says, “Why not us?” I’ll ask a similar question…”Why not you?” The “haves” versus the “have nots” often comes down to self belief. You already have everything you need to be successful. You just need to believe it!
- The power of visualization is real. When you consistently visualize yourself already achieving your goal – imagining yourself attaining what it is that you want – what you’re wearing, your exact location, the smells, the sounds around you, etc – you will greatly increase the likelihood of making your dream a reality. Make this a daily habit of picturing in your mind already achieving your goal and what it will feel like.
- Do not let failure detour you from your goal. Learn from your mistakes. You are not defined by your failure. All successful people fail…some hundreds of times. The difference between the ones who succeed vs. the ones who fail is only a matter of getting back up! Thomas Edison once said, “I haven’t failed, I’ve just found 10,00 ways that won’t work.”
A goal without belief is like a car without an engine. We can’t make goals and hope they happen. We must take control of our life and MAKE THEM HAPPEN, through determination and conviction. Check back in as I delve deeper into the Law of Attraction and the power of belief, while sharing a few personal stories to help bring this concept to life. Happy Friday!!!