Waking up from your dreams

Everyone’s said it a million times: You can do anything you set your mind to. Dreaming and setting goals are great for motivation, but achievement comes from something extra.

“I suppose you have all heard this cliche over and over again. It’s a phrase used more in sports than elsewhere, and probably used more than any other statement. The will to win. The will to win! As I’ve analyzed great champions I’m convinced that this is the something that makes the difference between mediocre athletes and great performers in the world of sports. It depends upon whether or not you’ve got this something deep down inside - this will to win.

"It’s a will to win, and not just a wish to win. I know a lot of people who have what I would call a wish to win. They’d like to go to the top. They daydream about the position they’d like to hold in life. I’ve seen it in sports. I’ve seen fellows in locker rooms sitting around dreaming on the benches; you talk to them about their performances, and they’ve got great dreams about what they’d like to be. They tell you about their potential, about the heights they could soar to, or the distances they could run, the times they could perform if they would only get out and train and work and do the thing necessary to bring it to pass.

"And you find them three or four years later still talking about what they could do if they would only pay the price. Well, it isn’t that kind of thinking that takes you to the top. Wishful thinking, or daydreaming, is the kind of escapism that will destroy many a man’s greatest aspiration.”

“Now, I don’t mean you dare not dream at all. I think the greatest thing in life is to be able to dream, to have great aspirations, but I think it equally important that you have a will that can turn that dream into reality. You’ve got to have something within you that is able to translate into concrete practice the idea in the back of your mind.

"You’ve got to dream, yes, but more importantly you’ve got to have a will that makes that thing come to pass.”

Bob Richards, Olympic gold medalist (pole vault, 1952 & 1956), from Heart of a Champion: Inspiring True Stories of Challenge and Triumph.


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