Grit. Guts. Glory

Tennis has been one of the most tasking games and requires a great bit of fitness, tenacity and guts. That is the primary reason for the respect of the game and the legends it has created over the past few decades. I have been an ardent fan of tennis for the past two decades and have witnessed journeys of great players like Boris Becker, Martina Navartilova, Steffi Graf, Pete Sampras, Andre Agassi, Roger Federer, William Sisters and many more. They are legends who have sweated it out day on day to make their mark in tennis history. There is a so much to be learnt from each one of them.

Morals, value system and work ethics!

This post is a celebration of the recently crowned French Open Champion Simona Halep (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Simona_Halep) and most importantly the journey to the top. She has been on top of her game for a long long time. Winning 17 WTA tournaments, 6 ITF titles, deservedly world no.1 all of this by the age of 27. What really was missing in the entire scape of the recently crowned world no.1 was an elusive Grand Slam.

She has been consistent year on year knocking on the door not getting bogged down by the regular losses in the finals. She has been in 3 grand slam finals before this and lost all of them. Happens to the best of the best to succumb under pressure, not able to maintain nerves and lose form at the final juncture. It can be heartbreaking and can drain down even the best of athletes. Analogy of the same can be drawn in real work situations where inspite of putting ones best foot forward, putting in a lot of hard work and still might not result in tangible success (completion of a great campaign, winning of a pitch). It can often be extremely demotivating and might drive people to quit and give up. This is where it is very important to hold ones head high and keep on going tenaciously.

Its mostly about self belief. It’s very important to learn from every loss, mature with experience, and keep going at it. Even after being down and out, shattered from losses, if one is able to to come back and come back strongly, there is no looking back. In true sense then, it is a sweet taste of victory because it didn’t come easy. It came with a lot of toil, hardwork and persistence. Needs a lot of character to do the same.

Simona after winning the French Open said,

“The fact that I didn’t give up after the one here last year(runner up in French Open 2017) means that I’m strong inside. I do this just because I love this sport. I love to be competitive on court and I’ve learned in those 12 months that if you don’t give up you are able to do anything. And also, with the people around me, we have worked on these things. I improved it and I made it better day by day.”

People who are really successful at work and life believe in the journey while chasing their dreams. Not only do they enjoy the wins but cherish the learnings from the losses as well. They are determined to win but keep their chins up.

The journey to success requires a lot of introspection, soul searching and great amount of toil and effort. Persistence is the key. Identifying ones weaknesses and accepting the same requires great amount of maturity and strength.

Interestingly enough her sports phycologist Alexis Castorri helped Halep not to hide from the difficult questions and said addressing her weaknesses was a sign of strength itself, especially in an era when players are under so much scrutiny.

Slow down, look at the bigger picture and then have a plan of action. Sometimes we are so entrenched in our works that we do not realise where we might be going wrong. Also being humble, accepting ones weaknesses and working to improve on them always add up.

Salute to Simona on the great comeback and salute to all individuals who overcome losses, defeats and inner demons to come out with flying colors (one step closer to their targets)!