Prepare and dare – put yourself out there

Isn’t that the recipe for success ? That was what I took away from my Athlete Story session with Nicole Sydbøge, 2-time world champion and winner of the World Games in Jiu-Jitsu.

It is not uncommon to hear the phrase “- don’t set your hopes too high, you might get disappointed.” At my first Olympics even our Chef de Mission told us that in his welcoming speech as we arrived. I know it usually comes from a very well-meaning place. But…not exactly a pep-talk right. Anyways, to get back to Nicole’s story I think she is a great example of all the adventure and learning experiences that can come out of putting yourself out there. And as for the success recipe:

You can prepare all you want but if you don’t put yourself out there – for fear of failure or mistakes or of getting disappointed – chances are that you will get more disappointed or left with more regrets if you never went for it. On the other hand if put yourself out there without being prepared…you probably will loose.

The funny thing about these athlete stories is that we can extract wisdom like this by simply listening to their stories. In fact science says that’s the way we absorb our learning best – listening to stories. Apparently we are wired to be passed on wisdom in this form. Just like they did thousands of years ago before books not to mention radio, tv and of course wifi and smartphones.

Maybe you are familiar with the often quoted Native American proverb:

“Tell me the facts and I’ll learn. Tell me the truth and I’ll believe. But tell me a story and it will live in heart forever.” Those proverbs tend to survive because there is some truth to them.

Science or not – the truth is I love connecting with fellow athletes in these shows, listening to their stories and sharing them with you.

If you want to listen to Nicole’s story here it is.

Maybe you take away something different because you may have a different focus. Maybe what catches your attention is that of course it’s not a big deal to chop the head off of a hen if you grew up with that – and you make some conclusion based on that. Or the part about being a body that other people get to kick and throw around. Well to me, it was the putting yourself out there that spoke to me.

In any case, enjoy the story.

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