I like my brain too much to ever step into a ring, but I definitely feel the lure. There is something primal about fighting, something so satisfying about sparring or hitting a bag. I took and taught kickboxing for years, with zero intention to ever put my pretty teeth at risk;)
I should add, I can barely watch a fight without squirming in my seat. I hate to witness the losing opponent stagger around the ring, semi-conscious.
Across disciplines, however, Ali has been an inspiration for as long as I can remember. Besides, there are many metaphors for being a fighter. We all fight in our own right, each day some of us, for our lives even.
But where do we get the gumption? How do some of us day-in-and-day-out step into the proverbial ring? For Ali, how did he know he’d be so good?
“I am the greatest, I said that even before I knew I was.”
With confidence, which comes first, the chicken or the egg?
“He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life.”
Ali claims to have hated every moment of training, but he knew that today’s suffering would be tomorrow’s champion.
“It’s the repetition of affirmations that leads to belief. And once that belief becomes a deep conviction, things begin to happen.”
Not only that, he had faith, in himself and his mission.
“It’s lack of faith that makes people afraid of meeting challenges, and I believed in myself.”
Champion is absolutely a mindset. The dream has to be louder than the doubters. The vision has to be more clear than the roadblocks. The guts have to be ready to take a few hits.
“Champions aren’t made in gyms. Champions are made from something they have deep inside them—a desire, a dream, a vision. They have to have last-minute stamina, they have to be a little faster, they have to have the skill and the will. But the will must be stronger than the skill.”
I lived for far too long in an “impossible” world. It wasn’t that long ago actually that I realized it was I who locked myself in the cage, my attitude, my perspective, my lack of motivation.
This is one of my favorites:
“Impossible is just a big word thrown around by small men who find it easier to live in the world they’ve been given than to explore the power they have to change it. Impossible is not a fact. It’s an opinion. Impossible is not a declaration. It’s a dare. Impossible is potential. Impossible is temporary. Impossible is nothing.”
It was only recently that I truly began to dare. I began to risk failure and fear and judgment for the sake of new beliefs, new horizons, a larger legacy.
I purposely put myself in the middle of those willing to dare.
My conviction isn’t always strong enough, my faith still wavers, stubborn fear can stifle motivation, but when I stand among those who dare to dare, when I witness their passion, their faith, their flow, I haven’t a single doubt, I see their champion in me!
I leave you with this: What is your favorite Ali quote?