Success is for anybody who is tough enough to withstand the ups and downs! Entrepreneurship is a grueling test much like the Tour de France. It takes mental toughness to get through those stages to succeed. Don’t confuse mental toughness with physical toughness. Mental toughness is resiliency, courage, flexibility, responsiveness, strength and sportsmanship. Are you tough enough?
Mentally tough is the ability to work hard and respond resiliently to failure and adversity; the inner quality that enables individuals to work hard and stick to their long-term passions and goals. Mental toughness has nothing to do with physical strength. Most athletes are physical tough thanks to physical conditioning, but mental toughness is necessary to win. In the heat of the game, you have to focus on the goal which requires concentration, positive attitude, confidence and resiliency.
It would be great if you could just concentrate on your goals and not let anything else interfere with you achieving them. Unfortunately, life gets in the way of that. If you were training for the Tour de France, you still need to eat, pay your bills and live your life. You would probably have a list of tasks you need to perform daily to reach your peak performance. In addition, you still handle all the other things you do to live. It takes the focus of an elite athlete to handle all of it or does it?
Much of the Tour de France is decided before the races even begin, as the top riders in the world tend to train harder and longer than other athletes. Lance Armstrong was always improving himself, knowing that the more he trained, the better racer he would become. The tools are available for you to improve as well, such as by advancing your education. The Master of Arts in Strategic Communication degree is one such way to improve yourself, as it gives you the ability to harness the power of the media to get people’s attention. Remember, the higher level of training you have, the more successful you will be. How you present your image is an important part of your success.
The Tour de France is twenty-three (23) days and covers around thirty-five (35) hundred kilometers (2,200 miles). It consists twenty-one (21) day-long stages. There are nine (9) flat stages, five (5) hilly stage, six (6) mountain stages with five (5) high-altitude finishes and one (1) individual time-trial stage. Although there is only one (1) first place finisher, it is a team sport. The rider with the lowest aggregate time is leader of a particular stage Individuals are competing against teams and there is only one winner!
This race is more mental than you realize. Anybody can perform well for short periods of time. How do you stay focused for twenty-three (23) days in a variety of venues and conditions? The race is not called because rain, wind or other difficulties. It is more reflective of life in general! The Lance Armstrong legacy shows many are willing to take shortcuts to win the race. This too is reflective of life in general, many people try to take short cuts and some even succeed for a period of time.
Whether you are preparing for the Tour de France or a major goal, you need to do the necessary things physically and mentally to reach your goal. You do not prepare one day for the Tour de France and you major goals are no different. It takes years to prepare practicing and achieving intermediate steps or races. It is not easy to win the Tour or achieving major goals. What are you doing to prepare and achieve your goals? Is it working for you?
How to get more mentally tough
- Flexibility – Races or life is not static! Things change and you have to react to the changes otherwise you will not succeed. You need to adjust, modify, change or even find new ways to solve the problem. Great entrepreneurs learn what they need to know to solve their problems. It may mean changing strategies, products, services or even people to get the desired result.
- Reflect on your decisions – Sometimes, you have to change strategies or just change entirely. Many successful people fail more than once before they succeed. You only fail if you accept the results! In a race or life, you make changes to reach your goal.
- Physical or mental strength – It starts with preparation which may mean exercise or acquiring the skills you need to achieve your goal. It can be psychological or sheer determination. Part of your preparation should include a compelling reason to achieve the goal.
- Enterprise – The Lance Armstrong years were filled with do anything necessary to win! I am not suggesting anything illegal or unethical! I am suggesting that you are creative and solve problems. People like Bill Gates or Steve Jobs found the courage to do something different.
- Everyone makes mistakes – Mistakes are not a problem! It is satisfaction with failure or mistakes that is unacceptable. If you are willing to keep trying, you eventually will succeed. If you stop after the first mistake or failure, you gave up!
The world is filled with competent, skilled people! It takes a great deal more to succeed when you have to deal with on a daily basis! It is very similar to winning the Tour de France. You need to have a variety of tings work well over a twenty-three day period for you to end up winner of the race. It is very similar to real life! It takes the skill, experience and mental toughness to succeed! Are you tough enough for success?
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