In the conclusion of our three-part series on the mindset of Kobe Bryant, we close by discussing his ability to get the most out of himself. Studies show if you have expect more from yourself, you tend to rise to the challenge and get more out of yourself.
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You get more when you expect more
Kobe talked about having a “kill-list” in high school. This list was compiled of the top high school basketball players who were ranked higher than him. Kobe said he was ranked 53 and whenever he played a school with someone ranked higher, he would make it his business to put on a show. Kobe used the lower expectations others had of him to fuel him to expect more of himself. He did not see himself as anything but the best and he worked to turn his dream into a reality.
It is not enough to expect more of yourself, you must back up your belief with action. As scripture says, faith without works is dead. Faith requires action that matches your belief. If you believe you are the best in the office, what type of results does the best create? How would they dress and how would they spend their day?
If you expect more, you need to do more
Then you need to answer the same questions for the worst person. Compare each list to what you do each day and decide if your actions are aligned with your faith. Are you living a life in line with your higher expectation or are you proving the skeptics wrong?
Kobe’s belief he was better than the people ranked above him pushed him to take action. He researched when he was playing anyone ranked higher than him and would practice in anticipation of the matchup. Kobe would do everything he could to outperform his rival. Are you researching and preparing for opportunities before they occur?
Immersion is a great way to learn
There are several language learning programs that teach you through something called immersion. It is the idea that if you only study a language in your spare time, you will not learn it as well as someone who solely speaks the language they are trying to learn. When you immerse yourself into something, you are making it clear to your mind it needs to adapt to survive.
If you want to learn mandarin, moving to China will significantly increase the likelihood of your success. The same can be said when someone from South America comes to the US and they don’t speak English. They quickly realize they must learn to speak English to survive. As a result, they rise to the challenge and accomplish their goal.
To help Kobe become one of the best basketball players ever, he said he immersed himself into the sport of basketball. It was all he consumed, all he thought about, and all he practiced. He did not allow his mind to wander on anything other than basketball. Are you willing to go all-in on your goal? Are you willing to immerse yourself and cut off all other recreational activities? When you expect more from yourself on how to allocate your time, you get more out of each day. Some will tell you watching a show here and there isn’t going to hurt anything, but it won’t help anything either. Be intentional with your time and immerse yourself into your craft.
Close to talent gap
Kobe said he immersed himself into the sport of basketball because he felt he wasn’t as fast or athletic as other players. He knew he needed to learn the fundamentals of the game to compete. Kobe learned angles and analyzed the way his completion played. Even though some may have been more talented than him, he still knew to expect more from himself to get more out of himself.
Kobe’s approach was similar to the one Wayne Gretzky used in the National Hockey League. When Gretzky was asked how he was one of the best players in hockey, he answered in similar fashion. He said he wasn’t the fastest, but he learned to get to where the puck was going.
How willing are you to do what it takes to win? Kobe made it clear in his mind that he was willing to do whatever it took to win. If that required him to take one-thousand shots a day and watch 5-hours of film, he would.
A life or death situation
When asked how he played through some really gruesome injuries, Kobe said he looked at basketball as the most important thing in his life. He told the story of how someone injured their hamstring and was asked to take it easy for a month. While resting their hamstring, their house caught on fire and their kids and wife were upstairs. Kobe said in that moment, most people would be able to find the strength to run upstairs, grab their loved ones and carry them downstairs. He said that mindset, that ability to turn the switch on is how he looked at basketball. He looked at his ability to play basketball as a life or death situation.
Each of us have expectations we have set over time that we can surpass if needed. They talk about mothers being able to lift buses when their child is in danger and they talk about fathers transforming themselves into a human shield. Others will run faster than they have ever run before because they dedicated their match to a loved one who passed. These are all moments that prove you have the ability reach a new level for the right reason.
Do you believe?
Do you believe your goals and aspirations are worthy of you reaching a new level? If you do, you need to look at your journey through the eyes of someone who believes it is a life or death situation. It is not a question of convenience or principle; it is a question of survival. When you start to look at accomplishing your goals as a life or death situation, you too will be able to tap into your greatness.
Those who procrastinate on their goal cannot see changing their life as a life or death situation.
The benefit of seeing your goals through the prism of life or death is it allows you to take control of yourself. Instead of reacting to a situation and that causing you become more focused, you can create the same belief on your own terms. In other words, if you want to eat healthier, don’t wait until you are diagnosed with diabetes or cancer to change your eating habits. Tell yourself it is life or death today and then live your life as if you received that cancer diagnosis.
When you don’t expect more, you get less
The saddest aspect of you not achieving your goal to change your life is you never get to move onto to your next goal. Instead of having a new resolution each year, you have the same resolution every January 1st. You keep making and breaking the promise with yourself until quit altogether. Then you have settled for a life you are not passionate about living.
To maintain your high expectation of yourself, you want to commit to the achojah lifestyle of taking small actions every day. Each small step may seem meaningless and pointless in the moment, but they are truly transformative over time.
You know what your life would be like if you don’t have a sense of urgency. Are you ready to see what you can achieve if you life as if there were no tomorrow?
More articles you may enjoy:
- Chasing Happiness by Rising to the Challenge
- Kobe Bryant’s Mindset: How to Overcome Fear and Self Doubt
- How Chasing Happiness Will Help You Catch Greatness
- Kobe Bryant’s Mindset: Expet More To Get More
Until next time,
Dre “Better Self, Better Wealth” Griggs