Many people think the words winners and champions are interchangeable, but to me there seems to be a huge difference. Its all in their attitude, their approach to the game or challenge laid out before them.
Winners are easily satisfied. They get the “W” and are happy. Once the goal is in sight they can glide in. Like a boat approaching a dock, they shut the engines down and coast up the moorings and all will be OK. This approach will effect the results as much as negative attitudes will. A winning attitude may not seem like a negative one, but it’s negative in the sense that it will not create the best possible results. I call it a neutral attitude.
Champions, on the other hand, are never satisfied. Champions are thinking of the next step. they are wondering how they could approach the dock better, more efficiently. They reach a point that others see as a pinnacle and ask themselves if they could get to that point again only better or faster. The unrelenting drive to overcome obstacles builds them, when winners are busy looking at what they have already accomplished, champions are looking for the next challenge.
Winners are happy that they have achieved a new goal. They will spend time relishing in their accomplishments. Not that there is anything wrong with this, but a champions is never content. They are constantly looking for a new goal.
Have you ever watch some sort of championship game where one team dominates the other? That is a prime example of winners vs. champions. It almost seems like one team comes out like a steamroller and the other has given up. The steamrollers will stop at nothing to get to the top, while the other team acts as if they’ve started the off season and are ready for a vacation.
Can a winner become a champion? What about someone who isn’t even in one of these categories? Can someone who has never wanted to achieve anything eventually achieve greatness? The answer is a resounding YES! It’s all in the mindset. One must work on the mental aspect of their chosen endeavor, but it can be done. Muhammad Ali said “Champions aren’t made in the gyms. Champions are made from something they have deep inside them-a desire, a dream, a vision.”
It is up to you to create that desire, that dream and that vision. There must be a fire within that you ignite yourself. No one can do this for you. The only way to light this fire is with a passion. It’s this passion that will turn you into a steamroller instead of a early vacationer. Movies are made about champions not winners. The constant pursuit of excellence makes for a better story.
This being said, I’ve come to realize that I am a winner, I get close to the finish line and I cruise in. My next big goal is to work on my championship attitude. When I’m in the last stretch, drive harder not glide in.