Motivation, Inspiration, Dedication, Determination. What do they have in common apart from ending in letters ..ION? Olympic athletes appear to have all of these in abundance. Super Saturday at the Winter Olympics had us all on tenterhooks – expectations were high as we waited to see how Lizzy Yarnold, Laura Deas, Izzy Atkin and Elise Christie would fare in their chosen disciplines. These women have been training for 4 years to get to the point where their ability will be tested. They have the support of the best coaches, physiotherapists, psychologists, nutritionists and facilities. They are at their peak mentally and physically hoping that the circumstances will be right for them to achieve Gold. Yet, there is no way to predict unforeseen circumstances. Lizzy Yarnold was struggling to deal with a chest infection and in today’s interview with the BBC declared that she had been on the verge of giving up. Luckily, she didn’t and went on to win her second gold medal. Elise Christie, world champion in 3 speed skating distances was facing her demons after a devastating performance in Sochi 4 years ago. Only a sooth-sayer would be able to predict that she would face a repeat of Sochi in 2 out of 3 races. Apparently after the wipe out she experienced yesterday, which may or may not have been her fault, she is positive. No broken bones and she may skate in the 1000 metres.

We all start off with same equipment – 10 fingers, 10 toes, lungs, a heart, 2 kidneys, a liver, born with our senses in tact. Perhaps at some point divine intervention sets in and our paths are chosen for us. Athletes don’t just become athletes – there is an in-built radar which keeps them focused and determined even when they may feel like giving up. Of course it isn’t easy because if it were, we would all be Olympians. Being in the 1% of elite athletes, winners of a Gold, Silver or Bronze medal is not an everyday occurrence, but applying some of their habits and focus to every day life and work, can pay off.

Staying strong requires just as much energy as giving up. The objective may not be an Olympic medal – building a successful business, becoming a specialist in your field, creating something of worth – You will benefit from the 4 words at the beginning of this blog – Motivation, Inspiration, Dedication, Determination. 

Susie Crolla. CEO