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The 5 rings of athletic and personal greatness

There must be thousands of self help and best intention books and opinions on the keys and "secret sauce" to greatness in sports. 

Every coach,trainer and self-proclaimed  expert professes to have the blueprint to being a household name in the sports world. 

Businesses spend millions of dollars each year bringing in mental coaches and performance experts to help their workers. 

Let's keep it real and save the world a ton of money and time and admit that their are only 5 pieces ( rings) to winning a Gold medal or living the dream in your personal and professional worid:

1. You need talent to begin with. 

You can work your ass off and practice all day singing in the shower and take singing lessons but your determination and grit won't get you in the finals of American Idol. If you can not write and read and communicate at a certain level, don't expect rapid promotions in the corporate world. Talent is the initial platform for skill to be born. 

 Make sure someone other than your grandmother thinks you have the baseline of talent and minimum  skill level to  start the climb.  Talent by itself won't get it done. Sadly, you  can't make chicken salad out of chicken poop!

2. The second ring is a big word used all the time but we are going to drill down to its three major components. 

DISCIPLINE; emotional,visual and physical discipline.

Elite people are much more under control and can better discipline their thoughts and emotions when the situation calls for it. 

In competition, they don't wander off into the ratholes of worry, fear or self doubt  for too long  and  exhibit razor like discipline in their pregame and in- game preactions.

Their emotional discipline, rehearsed over and over in the high stress training environment they create, allows for minimal wandering in their thoughts, images and actions when they take the stage. 

Visual Discipline is a must for for every athlete.

The ability to scan and see the whole field or position your focus point on where the ball is going rather than where it's been ( predicting or estimating time to collision) requires visual intelligence which starts with disciplining your visual wandering! The body follows the eyes. 

Physical Discpline. 

Simple formula. Those that are more efficient with the 1440 gifts we have each day (1440 minutes in a day) excel in all that they do.  

Sleep, exercise, study, training and play time can all be accomplished if we better manage the clock each day. The best of the best do not let others and distractions steal life's most precious asset; time. 

3. Are you a Learner and always pursuing knowledge to improve?  Olympic level athletes display an uncanny thirst for information and realize Knowledge is the new money. 

Successful people off the field realize that Intellectual capital is more important than financial capital in the long run.  Being a professional and never ending learner allows the best of the best to never get caught by their rivals. 

4. Motivatiion starts from within. 

Coaches, trainers, family can support and encourage and be lifetime sounding boards but the will to train, compete and excel comes from the soul of the elite performers.  

High level humans look no further than themselves to finish the workout or push themselves when fatigue and fear set in. 

The best of the best appreciate and at times need as a reminder the words of encouragement from others but do not rely on others to  get it done. 

Top of the food chain performers know that it's what you do when no one is around that really counts.  

Elite humans use their own hard core motivation to view failure as feedback and a mechanism to get back up and get your ass kicked again!

5. The best athletes and successful people are control freaks. 

They understand what and what not they can control and practice their "in game thought and image control better than the rest. 

Their ability to rehearse their routines and create and control their game emotions is uncanny. 

Finally, elite humans control the images they allow themselves to "see" during performance. Olympians are the ultimate time travelers. They stay out of the future and past world and and live, breathe and perform in the present. 

Go grab the 5 rings and connect them as you pursue your own Olympic gold.  

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