No One Is an Island
“For a long time, I convinced myself that I could will my way to a dream. As long as I wanted it bad enough, I could make it happen. But if there is one great truth I learned from this great game, it’s that no great accomplishment is ever achieved by yourself. Being successful is contingent on others, and it always starts with someone taking a chance on you.” – Kurt Warner, PFT
I heard retired NFL quarterback Kurt Warner say these words Saturday night during his enshrinement into the NFL Hall of Fame with his fellow 2017 classmates.
“…no great accomplishment is ever achieved by yourself.”
I believe a lot of us love the idea of reaching our goals and claiming that “I did it.” I put in the work. I faced the obstacles. I won. Our (long) roads from Day One to eventually reaching our goal can many times feel, well, lonely. We remember the early mornings we woke up and went to the gym, alone. We think about the times we drove cross-country for our dream, alone. And we think about the struggles we went through financially, alone.
Yet, through all that time, we were never actually alone. And the reason we got to that goal was never just us.
Don’t You Remember…
Those first customers who bought into the idea you had, believed in you, and so bought your first products. They were with you the whole time and contributed to your success.
That boss at your first job, who despite your inexperience, took a chance on you. It’s because of that job you learned grit, specific work skills you now use daily, and of course, leadership skills from that first boss. Because of all those things learned from your first team, you were prepared to win now in this new arena.
And what about at the gym? What about those regulars you saw every morning who helped you by giving you a spot when you went for a new PR or called you out when you started to slack off your training? Their encouragement and accountability absolutely contributed to where you are now.
We love the idea of being the hero of the story, saving the day all alone, but that wouldn’t be reality would it? We need great teammates in order to reach our goals.
So How Do We Find Those Teammates?
In order to achieve success, we each must surround ourselves with iron. Proverbs states that “as iron sharpens iron, one man sharpens another.” Look around and honestly ask yourself, “Am who I invest my daily life with sharpening me – or dulling me?” There are success-driven Competitors out there, people just like you, who are asking themselves the same question. They need to “level up” their teammates, but aren’t sure where to start.
First, ask yourself what do the ideal teammates look like? For me, an ideal teammate has most, if not all, of these characteristics:
- Success-driven – in personal and professional lives
- Relationship-oriented individual – this is long-term, not transactional
- Service-mindset – wants to win but also wants to help/see others win
- High standards – Don’t surround yourself with “yes men/women” but individuals who are as quick to encourage you as they are challenge you.
- Smarter than me in one / multiple arenas – who is someone can I learn from as well as provide value to?
Next, start looking for where these type of individuals hang out and start making connections. Try:
- Meetup.com – local events for specific passions/business
- Online groups and forums – Facebook has thousands of them, there are great people worth connecting to in CED Group & The Secret Team.
- Local gyms or fitness studios – a lot of individuals passionate about making positive changes in their health also do so in other areas of their life
- Masterminds – online groups & communities of success-driven individuals in specific industries, there to help each other succeed
- Work – organize a happy hour or lunch where you can get to know co-workers who may share a similar mindset as you
We can each win big – but it’s going to take some help
Quarterbacks need offensive lineman, running backs, wide receivers, and coaches to all do their jobs in order to excel. Point guards need the other four players on the court to make that alley-oop pass look easy. And successful Competitors need teammates off the playing field in order to reach their goals. It’s that simple.
Find your iron.