This week’s tip is from 1994 Olympic gold medalist, Dan Jansen. Dan was one of the top speed skaters in the world in the 80’s & 90’s and now is a commentator for NBC.
“I do not try to be better than anybody else. I only try to be better than myself.”
Dan experienced frustration and heartbreak in the 88 and 92 Olympics before finally winning gold in 94 in Norway. His quote was an answer he gave to a question from famous Olympic biographer, Bud Greenspan, at the 94 Games.
Dan expanded on this to me: “The advice is simple and speaks to making yourself the very best that you can be. Control the things you can control. Prepare the very best you can prepare. Then go out and do the very best that you can do. If you can look back afterwards and answer ‘yes’ to those three questions, you will never have any long term regrets.”
I love being able to share insight like this from successful athletes and coaches. It amazes me how similar and connected the ideas are. Dan’s advice sounds a lot like John Wooden’s definition of competitive greatness in his pyramid of success.
“Success is peace of mind which is a direct result of self-satisfaction in knowing you made the effort to become the best you are capable of becoming.”
I hope these words are a source of encouragement for you as you strive to be your best today and every day.
“His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!”