I own a little book, called ‘Winning Isn’t Normal.’ Written by sports psychologist Dr Keith bell and published in 1982, it was really written for competitive swimmers, aimed at motivating them to aim high and reach their potential. But I have always loved the title and believe it has a message for us all.
The overall message of the book is to raise yourself above others, to not be content with being just one of the crowd, but to become a winner in whatever you choose to do. Rather than consider a winner as someone who has more talent than you, know that you have choices. You too can be a winner in whatever you do if you make the most of opportunities and do special things to enable them to win.
The idea of winning not being normal is to show you that, rather than having negative connotations, winning just simply isn’t the norm. Not every one can win a race, or whatever it is they’ve set their mind to achieve. To be a winner you have to be different. You have to do things that others don’t do if you want to achieve success.
If you do the same preparation as everyone else, you’ll end up being one of the crowd. In Dr Keith bell’s words, ‘You can’t train like everyone else. You have to train more and better.’ Nor can you talk and think like everyone else. If you want to stand at the top of your field you’ll have to start thinking about what you’re going to do that is different. Only so many people can be winners, so you have to make a conscious effort if one of those winners is to be you.
Winning doesn’t happen by accident, you have to make it happen by making the decision to be a winner. A school I teach at part-time has the slogan, ‘Go for Gold.’ All the students are encouraged to always do their best, aiming higher all the time, in other words achieving the ultimate success, a personal gold medal. Their winning is against themselves, rather than trying to be better than someone else. But they are still trying to be winners.
No matter whether you are aiming for success in a sporting field, your career, or any other endeavour you may participate in, why not try and do your best. Think about Dr Keith Bell’s title, that winning isn’t normal. Make yourself stand out from the crowd. Work at being different from the others. Make it your decision to do things differently from other people. Go for gold and be a winner, because Winning isn’t Normal.