This video above is an excellent compilation of quotes from Will Smith over the years. The guy has it all right.
Success Starts With Belief
Do you believe in yourself?
Are you optimistic about your future?
Can you see the bright side when others seem to only see the worst?
I can fully relate to Will after watching this video. It’s going to sound self-indulgent, but through the years people have always been frustrated and say that I’m “good at everything” when I would be able to best them at something on my first try (video games, sports, etc.). But the thing is, I have 2 things going for me and they’re simple things that you can do for yourself as well.
1. Believe In Yourself and Your Abilities
“He who says he can and he who says he can’t are both usually right” – Confucius
Never question whether or not you’re “good enough” to do something. If you want it, go for it. It’s as simple as that. You may not always succeed right away, but you will succeed if you keep fighting for it.
There’s every reason to believe in yourself and no reason not to believe. A lack of belief leads to failure and nothing more. Honestly, if you don’t believe you will succeed, why even try in the first place?
2. Practice, Practice, Practice
“I never really viewed myself as particularly talented. Where I excel is ridiculous, sickening, work ethic.” – Will Smith
I’m competitive and I absolutely hate losing, but making everything you do in life a competition is not a good thing either. No one wants to be around you if you’re always one-upping them and correcting what they do. But on the flip side, driving to be the best at everything will make those around you envious.
Growing up I had one friend in particular who would buy a video game and put in serious hours playing it before he would let me come over, just in an effort to beat me. More often than not, though, I would still win. Did I know some cheat code for the game? Nope. Did I secretly practice at home knowing that they bought the game and would invite me over soon? Nope. Then how could I possibly win?
I play for perfection. I may have never played that particular game, usually a sports game, but I had played out every last detail in so many other games that the logic behind solving the puzzles just came naturally. Granted, sports games don’t have puzzles in the traditional sense, but key presses, movements, timing, these are all components of every game and are puzzles in their own right, just at a lower level.
Now don’t get me wrong, there have been times when I have failed or lost and didn’t reach whatever the measure of success was for an event, but the key was and is that I never dwell on it.
The thing to actually think about is whether or not you care about the fact that you’re not the best at what you’re doing. If you truly care about whatever it is, then commit to do whatever it takes to succeed.
The reason that I’m good at everything (yes I believe that I am good at everything, but remember believing in yourself is key!) is that I work hard to make sure that it’s true.
When I was about eight, I wanted to rollerblade, so I got a pair, strapped them on, and started on my way. My mom likes to say that I went up and down the driveway that one day until I was a pro. It wasn’t quite that quick, but after skating for 6-10 hours a day for several days straight I was feeling good and confident.
But what if I didn’t believe that I could ever learn to rollerblade? What if I didn’t work to succeed? Well there’s a good chance that the first time I fell the skates would have ended up right in the corner of the basement where they would have accumulated dust for years to come.
Believe in yourself and fight for what you want.
Here’s the part that you’ll read and roll your eyes at it’s ridiculousness, but I’ll say it anyway.
I don’t know how to swim. I’ve never learned and never really spent much time in water, so I can’t do it yet. Now I know I can learn to swim, sure it’d look pretty hilarious to see a 6’4″ dude struggling to float in 5′ deep water, but I know I can do it.
But that’s not the ridiculous part. What’s ridiculous is that I wholeheartedly believe that, if I wanted to, I could become an Olympic swimmer. I have zero interest in actually doing it, but I truly believe that I could achieve it.
That’s obviously an extreme example and I’m not going to tell you that if you believe you can fly, that you should jump off a cliff, but what I want you to take away is that you need to fully and truly believe in yourself.
Wholeheartedly believing will be difficult at first and may seem somewhat counter-intuitive to the world we live in where others constantly hold you down and tell you to be “realistic” or accept failure and hardship as fact. But understand that you can do absolutely anything that you set your mind to if you want it bad enough. The only thing holding you back is yourself.
Belief in yourself will set you apart from others. Instead of looking at a missed hurdle as a failure, remember that you’ve just taken one step closer to your inevitable success. Understand this and it’s impossible for you to fail.