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What does Armin Van Buuren, aspiring athletes and starts up kids have in common? Elite-ness

Last weekend my lovely hubby came back from NZ and brought me home an awesome Merino Wool hoodie and a nasty bug that left me without a voice for a few days!  Awesome! (I guess I got through all of Winter without a cold so it had to happen sooner or later).

But when you’re pathologically optimistic like I seem to be – you can turn any negative into a positive and I certainly did.  I got to spend a few days doing something that I absolutely freekin love…. watching documentaries!

Seriously – I watched too many to remember – one after the other. I couldn’t get enough of them!  I learnt something from every single one of them and could have kept watching for days and days.

The first few that I watched in a row really struck a cord with me.  They were about seemingly different topics, but there was some glaring commonalities between them, and I wanted to share.

So the three docos were:

  1. Personal Best” – a documentary on four English athletes in the lead up the Olympic Games in London.
  2. A year with Armin Van Buuren” – the title is pretty self explanatory! (For those of you who know me well, you will know that I think I was meant to be a DJ and love a bit of tecas, so loved this one!)
  3. Start Up Kids” – a doco about young tech entrepreneurs and what makes them tick.

So what does a world leading DJ, aspiring Olympic athletes and tech start up founders have in common.. elite-ness.

(Is that even a word?  Ehh who cares… if someone told me I had some “elite-ness” about myself or my life I’d be pretty chuffed – real word or not).

Elite-ness.

These people were elite in there fields.  They worked really, really hard.  They sacrificed. They had passion in their lives.  They enjoyed themselves.  They didn’t want to be normal. They were driven.  They fell over and got back up. They sought fulfillment within themselves and wanted to somehow change their own and other people’s worlds.

Here were the main messages the came through loud and clear:

1. We are all the same and potentially anyone could do anything… if only we knew what we wanted to do.

Seriously think about that – we are all the same.  The person driving beside you in the traffic, the person lining up beside you in a 100m race.  We are all humans, with issues, with dreams, with excuses, with talents, with fears. We are all connected and no one is better than you are.

Potentially anyone could do anything.  Potentially you could do anything.  I know there’s part of you that doesn’t want to believe this sentence. Because when you do believe this sentence, life might change.. a lot. A lot of doors open, a lot of possibilities appear and that can be very scary, very dizzying, very intimidating…. but it’s also really freekin exciting.

Think about it – could that be true, that you could actually potentiallydo anything? 🙂

2. Don’t just show up in life.. give it your best.  Have high standards for yourself and your one precious life. Then do what you need to do – no excuses.  Seek fulfillment, don’t settle.

Don’t just show up in life… we’ve all heard this before and I still love it. I need to ask myself this question – “Am I just showing up”?  Maybe you need to ask yourself this question too.  Sure, I train 5 or 6 days a week… but am I just “showing up” or am I “giving it my best”?  Are you just “showing up” at work?  Are you just “showing up” at home? Or are you really there? Really present, switched on and giving it your all?

I can’t think of anything scarier than getting to the end of my life and realising that I just “showed up and went through the motions”.. what about you?  Are you showing up or are here, present and alive?

3. Stop. Take some time to realise how amazing life is.  Think about the time we live in – what surrounds us – and what we can choose to do with our lives.  Don’t just appreciate what is good – stop and really soak it all in.

This is not about gratitude people, this is not “I appreciate my family and flowers and a roof over my head”…. this is about seriously opening your eyes and seeing how freeking amazing life is. *Warning* This may hurt your head. 🙂

4. You need to enjoy what you do, to be your best.

When you’re enjoying what you do it’s not work – you’re fueled with passion, you’re calm because you have a sense of purpose… you’re more likely to succeed. All of these people in these docs were enjoying what they were doing and it showed.

5. You have to work freekin hard to get what you want.

They were all work horses – Armin Van Buuren was an inspiration in particular, did you know he started with just a tiny internet podcast and was trained as a lawyer!? Anyway, come to think of it, most people I know who achieved anything work really hard. Nuff said.

And a little more from the track and field doco:

I of course have a close connection with athletics. At the risk of sounding like a cheeseball – it has been one of my biggest teachers in life, so here were some more take ways from the doco “Personal Best” that I absolutely loved, that are applicable to many areas of life:

  1. Running – as fast as you can – it’s basic, but that doesn’t mean it is easy.
  2. There is no place for hope in track and field. Want it, hunger for it, do what you need to do to get it done and then go do it.
  3. The pain from training will always be there, because you have to challenge yourself everyday.. you just get used to it.
  4. If you don’t change yourself as a person, how do you expect to change the world around you?
  5. You need to ask yourself “do I actually believe I could be, where I should be”?  Being elite starts with self belief.

I want that last one to ring in my ears.. and in yours.

Do you actually believe you COULD be, where you SHOULD be?

Something we all struggle with.. just simply believing that potentially anyone could do anything.

That potentially YOU can do anything.

I believe elite-ness starts with this very question.

Do you actually believe you COULD be, where you SHOULD be?

With some self belief, a whole lot of hard work and enjoyment.. potentially.. anything could happen.

What are you waiting for?

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