I recently heard a story from someone that got to watch one of Kobe Bryant’s private workouts about ten years ago.
Kobe’s workouts were legendary, not necessarily for the intensity but for the meticulous attention to detail in everything he did.
In this particular workout, Kobe spent 45 minutes working on basic footwork. For anyone that played basketball, this would include pivoting, crossing over, etc.
Simple stuff that you probably learned in grade school or junior high.
Afterwards, he was asked, “Kobe, you’re the best player in the world. Why would you spend 45 minutes of your workout doing such basic footwork?”
Kobe smiled and raised an eyebrow:
Why do you think I’m the best player in the world?
Excellence in anything can feel boring at times; doing the same things over and over, for only small, almost imperceptible levels of improvement.
You start to question what you’re doing, if you’re doing it right, if you should be doing more and if it matters.
But if you believe that it doesn’t, you either give up on what you’re doing or chase the latest, newest shiny object, not realizing that you were on the precipice of what you wanted by staying the course.
One way Outperformers remain engaged is by separating the “lead” and “lag” measures. A lead measure is the time you spend on your footwork. A lag measure is your season stats as a basketball player.
Lead is controllable. Lag is less so.
This is why I’m such a big fan of simple methods of tracking lead measures, like the Seinfeld Strategy. It’s a way of seeing that you’re doing something that matters and how often you’re doing it.
This, stacked up over time, becomes motivational by itself. When it’s coupled with the lagging performance improvements, it’s even more empowering.
I have no idea where this finds you today, but whatever your aspirations are for this year, stick with it. And never get bored with the basics.
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