Start With Why

I am sitting here at the GoodLife in Toronto Airport on my 12 hour layover to Cuba. I am heading to Cuba to play for Team Canada at the Pan Am Championships for the third year in a row.

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And as I am sitting here (I have already worked out twice) I start listening to Simon Sinek’s “Start with Why” talk. Simon is a very famous author and speaker and I have heard many of his things, but I found this one to be particularly striking.

If you haven’t heard it- check it out https://youtu.be/u4ZoJKF_VuA.

The main premise of the talk is that really successful companies don’t sell a product- they sell a belief system. They focus less on what they do, and more on why they do it. Simon brings to life several examples of companies (Apple) and people (Martin Luther King Jr., Wright Brothers) who have changed the world because of their commitment to a “why.”

I think this is especially true in the world of sport. I think back to all of the people I have met across this journey; the ones that I would continue extremely successful are the one who know why they play. Some people play for the money (a select few) and notoriety that comes with being a world class athlete. Some play exclusively as a link to network or get into school or to qualify for a single event. Some play to feed their own ego, and some play just for fun.

I would argue that each of these reasons for playing has its own merits, and one should not be judged better than the others. For example, I don’t think it is necessarily wrong to play for money nor is it wrong to play for fun. I think the important part is that you remain intimately connected to why you play. If your only reason for playing is money, but you are outside that top 10 players who are making a good living off the sport, you will become disillusioned and have to quit. Perhaps there is a more efficient way of making money than Badminton? Furthermore, if you only play to have fun but you hate loosing you will also become disillusioned when you realize that it takes more losses than anything to be successful. Perhaps there is a better way to have fun?

The people I know who have had the best careers know exactly why they play. And they do it so much that their “why” becomes “who” they are.

In fact, I would like to think that knowing why I play has been a big part of my success. I play because I love Badminton. I love waking up and pushing my limits and seeing myself improve a little more each and every single day. I am obsessed with growth, and sport is a platform that feeds growth like nothing else in life. I love the process of learning and growing in sport, and I hope I always have that in my life.

Start With Why.

Thanks Simon Sinek.

LC

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Recent Trip…

Hi everyone!

I am just back from a two week tour. I played the Jamaica international where I made quarter final, and I spent a week sparring and training in Toronto.

 

Lots of Badminton lots of fun. Check the pics!

 

Next up is Pan Ams in Cuba end of April!

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Christmas Update

Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, and Great Festius,

Whatever you celebrate- I hope it has been filled with fun and cheer.

I have spent the majority of my Christmas focused on “other projects.” I allowed myself a 1 week break from Badminton (although I have been keeping up with my strength work). I have also allowed myself a bit of a break from school. I have been spending my days eating good food, hitting the sauna, and reading everything I haven’t had time for.

Tonight I am sitting down to plan some goals for 2017 both in and out of Badminton. I went on Bad Can website and pretty cool to see that after a semi’s in Moncton I am the #4 ranked player in the country with 2 guys above me not technically able to compete for Team Canada. Rankings don’t mean everything but it is always cool to see yourself climb a list.

Next for me is National Championships in Sask in February!

 

 

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The Grind: What it is and Why You’re Missing Out

Wow, what a run.

 

If you are wondering why I haven’t written you much lately it is because I have been on a supreme grind and blogging has had to take the back burner for a few months. This is what life has looking like for the last little while:

6:30am: Wake Up

7:30 – 9:00: Working on a new business

9:00 – 11:00: Strength Training

11:00am – 3pm: School Work

3pm – 5pm: On Court Training

5pm- 5:30pm: Eat

5:30pm – 10pm: Class/ School Work/ Business Work

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It’s 8pm on a Saturday night. I have been here since 10am. It is also where I have been most weekends and days for the last while. After just getting ahead of a final assignment, I have just looked up; it is the first moment I have had to breathe in several months.

What is the grind you ask? The grind is an unwavering dedication to your dreams and goals so much so that it takes up the majority of your existence and you pursue regardless of the walls in front of you.

I think the grind is different for everyone. For some people it is being in a school lab for most of your waking hours, for some it is training obscene amounts, for some it is working those extra hours after 5pm and on the weekend, and for me I have come to find it is all of the above.

You see, I believe in the power of work ethic. After all, it’s all I have. Most people know by now that I am not the most talented or skilled Badminton player on the planet. In fact, if I am being totally honest I would say that the fact that I have been able to play on Team Canada on multiple occasions can essentially be boiled down to my dedication to the grind:

  • 2x training per day for several years
  • moved through 3 different places before I was 24 years old
  • slept in countless airports
  • had countless jobs to support training
  • finished undergrad degree
  • working on master’s degree

To do this, I have had to also make several sacrifices. I agree, it is not the path for everyone but let me tell you why I love it and why I think you would too.

Think of your life objectively for a minute. There are 24 hours in a day. I believe to lead a happy, healthy human life it is imperative to get 8 hours of sleep. Then, on average we spend about 2 hours per day getting or eating food. That means you only have 14 hours to do all the things you want to do (this includes work, friends, family, exercise, hobbies, transportation, fun, etc..). 14 hours is not a lot of time to fit all of that in! Second to that is that you are only going to be as sharp and vital as you are right now. In other words, in 20 years you are inevitably going to have less time and energy for your goals then you do right now.

So when you break it down like this you can see that there is actually very little time to see and experience this planet and do all of the things that are possible. That is why I feel it is imperative to maximize every single second right now. You don’t have time to waste. This is your only chance.

The grind is not doing a bunch of things you hate; that is just a stupid life and poor decisions. The grind is working relentlessly towards your dreams. That is why I love the grind and I hope it never leaves me.

 

 

Update

What I have been up to lately:

-Training 2x per day still (one strength session one on court)

-Currently in the middle of a power phase.

-Struggling with some problems in my knees but they are coming around

-Playing mostly in Canada this year

-Totally immersed in my MBA. This semester requires 1600 pages of reading plus 12 assignments. Busy days.

-Life is great

 

Will give a more thoughtful update when I have more to say.