I stumbled on a great parable that simply explains the mindset of someone who is on the way to personal excellence. Here it is:

A man is walking in the country-side and sees three workers, each pushing a wheelbarrow holding one enormous stone.

Unsatisfied with that answer, the man asks the second worker with a wheelbarrow the same question. Without even bothering to look up, this man says “We’re putting up walls.

Frustrated, the man tries one last time. “I say there,” he asks the third worker, “can you please tell me what you men are doing here?” Unlike the other two, this man stops, puts down his wheelbarrow, wipes the sweat from his forehead and says with a big smile, “We are building a castle and it’s going to be magnificent .

Rocheser Castle

You see, a person with the mindset that will lead to great things in their lives or sport, is the one who is able to see, and hold on to, the end result thereby making the simple tedious momentary hard work worth the “hassle”.

All mindsets begin with perception, which leads to whatever attitude you will carry around with you.

In the sports world, it can be difficult to get athletes to understand and be ok with the idea of process and building.

I think we are so used to getting everything we need in life already packaged up and handed to us that it’s hard for us to grasp process. If we want clothes, we shop for them. If we want sneakers, someone has already made them. If we want food, take your pick, they lined up all over our streets.

Athletes often think that their performance is that way as well. They don’t want to put in the work process it takes to get excellent performance. They hope it shows up when the lights come on. But performance is not like material goods we find in stores. You have to haul rocks first, but keep in mind that you ARE building a castle too!

If I was walking by when coach is working you hard in practice, and I asked you “What are you doing?” What would you say?

Coaches. If I came and saw your program and asked you “What are YOU doing?” What would you say?


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