by Aaron Womack, Jr.
The great motivational speaker, Eric Thomas, states “everybody wants to be a beast, until it’s time to do what beasts do.” People want to go into beast mode only on game day, which, on the surface seems to be okay, but the problem is what happens when you go up against another beast? Do you think you’re ready for that? Do you think your game plan is enough? While watching lions, the king of all beasts, we normally only watch the kill. We get all caught up on the lion running down its prey and get all excited and fired up and say, “Yeah, that’s me, I’m a beast.” What it really comes down to is the knowledge that beast mode is not about the battle; it is the preparation for the battle that makes a beast a beast.
Practice and work ethic are the preparation for becoming a beast. If you’re not in beast mode for practice, you’ll never become a beast for battle. Now the question should be, how do I become a beast? In the animal kingdom the female lion goes on the hunt. Male lions will go out on a hunt if it’s necessary, like when they go after big prey like buffalo, but a male lion’s primary duty is to protect the den. It’s more suitable for female lions to go on the hunt. The reason being is they don’t have the large manes that their male counterparts have, so they are less likely to be seen by their prey. In other words, part of being a beast is that you don’t want your opponent to see you coming, you want to remain conspicuous.
There isn’t a need to do a whole lot of talking leading up to the event. Don’t get ready, be ready. Your opponent doesn’t need to know you’re in the weight room getting ready, they don’t need to hear you bragging about how much you can bench press or you telling people how much faster your time is in the 40 yard dash. Remain under the radar for the battle. No need to brag about what you’re doing to get ready.
You must put in work behind the scenes. This is where there are no distractions or false praise. This is where good becomes Great. The late great Muhammad Ali, although he would tell you what he would do to you in the ring, you never heard him tell you how he was getting prepared to defeat you in the ring. He didn’t reveal the preparation; in fact, I think his talking often distracted his opponents into thinking that he was just all talk, and not really working hard. What his trainers would tell you was that he was one of the hardest workers in preparing for a fight.
Look at known trash talker Michael Jordan. He would knock you out on the court and tell you about it before and after he would do it. But what he wouldn’t tell you was how he was preparing for the battle. He didn’t show his mane, you didn’t see him coming. When the Portland Trailblazers faced M.J. before the 1992 NBA finals, their game plan was to lay off him and just let him shoot. What happened? He hit six three-pointers and led the Bulls to a blowout. When did he become a better shooter? He never bragged about his shooting.
Jordan would lead his teammates in 6:00 a.m. workouts. He was being a beast in his workouts before he became a beast during game day. Another beast, Larry Bird, made sure that no one outworked him. Kobe Bryant would often practice privately before and after practice. You don’t know the Greats are coming until it’s too late. David defeated loudmouth Goliath because, although David didn’t look the part, he was a beast when no one saw him. He wasn’t worried about Goliath because he put his work in killing lions and bears who were trying to eat the sheep he was protecting.
The loudest opponents are the ones you least must worry about. Becoming great doesn’t mean you can’t talk about it; it means in order to be great and become a beast you must let your work do the talking. Tony Robbins said, “People are rewarded in public for what they do in private.”
What are you doing in private? Musicians spend 90% of their time practicing and 10% of their time performing. You can’t be a beast focusing on just the 10%; a true beast is willing to take care of the 90%.
How I Can Help You? What happens to a dream deferred? Does it stay looming in the back of your mind, nagging at you to get started? Or have you put it on a shelf in hopes of getting to it one day? Dreams come in all shapes and sizes but they should never be ignored.
Is it that you want to go back to school, start your own business, lose those extra pounds, or write that book you have always wanted to author? I know that feeling, I have been there. I, too, was struggling and I got stuck. I can still hear the reasons (excuses)…It’s not the right time, I don’t have any spare time, the cost is more than I can afford, I don’t have what it takes or it’s too big of a dream. Does this sound familiar?
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