Four Lessons on Winning from Misty Copeland

Misty Copeland is one of the most inspirational persons on the planet, she is the first African American to be promoted to be named principal dancer in American Ballet Theatre's 75-year history. She has overcome tremendous hardships to reach this point and it is truly an inspirational story. I happened to read her book Ballerina Body and found the section on mind to be interesting. Here are the four keys to her success that we can adopt.
Set Challenging Goals – The first step is to be absolutely clear on what is your dream. You have to know exactly what you want and you need to develop the edge to keep thinking about your goals daily. She thinks about her goals all the time. Set the life goals you want. Set goals for your personal life, family life, career, social and community. Every athlete who has had any success talks about setting those big hairy audacious goals.
Journaling – Interesting she says that you should write down how things are going every day. I think this is a great strategy as writing down everything happening in your life and running through your mind creates clarity. Use your journal to record your daily activities, goals, dreams, progress, worries and actions you are going to take to create the life you want. This is a life enhancing activity irrespective of whatever you do for a living. Write down all your accomplishments as well.
Visualization – You need to visualize yourself as a success long before it happens. It is easy to see its application in sports because there is a clear definition of what winning looks like. The way we apply it to our lives is to visualize whatever you want to happen. For example if you have a meeting that you want to do well visualize yourself performing great and the meeting ending well with the result you wanted. If you want to run half marathons visualize yourself at the finish line feeling the sensation of elation and completion. Visualize all your goals as complete and then take the action necessary to make it work.
Affirmation– She says you should do affirmations first thing in the morning. One affirmation could be “I am victorious.” I like the affirmations “I feel happy I feel healthy I feel terrific” or “I can handle anything life throws at me” or “I am a strong person mentally and can achieve all the goals I set.” Of course you should set the affirmations that work for you. Every athlete does practice affirmation and every success book talks about it. Of course for affirmations to work action is needed. Affirmations without action are futile but if it is married with action then it is life enhancing.
There you have it the four ways to win from Misty Copeland. I think if we apply this to our lives on a daily basis we can win in whatever we do for a living.
The views expressed here are my own and do not represent my organization.


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