“You have to expect things of yourself before you can do them.” Michael Jordan
I want to start this chapter with a parable that is particularly meaningful to me. A group of travelers in the desert came across Moses and thought their luck had changed. They raced over to him and begged for rain. Their village was dying because of the drought. Moses said “Go my friends and there will be water”.
So they left, excited, thinking that the rain would come. It didn’t, so they went back to him and said “Moses, you sent us away with the reassurance that there would be rain. But it has not come”. Moses said “You want rain?” “Yes”, the people answered. “Well where are your ditches?” Moses replied. “Ditches?” The villagers were puzzled. “Yes, your ditches. How can I give you rain if you have not dug your ditches in order to catch the rain?”
If you want something in life, you have to prepare yourself to receive it. If you want a car, you have to arrange a space in your garage, or even build a garage. If you want money, you open a bank account.
The first thing Kurek got Angela and me to do was to buy a cabinet for our gold medal. At first, I laughed at him. But, because of the way I was beginning to program myself, through Kurek’s constant teaching, it must have registered with me.
One day, about two weeks later, I walked past a pet shop. I was thinking, ‘cabinet = upside-down fish tank’, whereas Angela’s perception was ‘big glass cabinet’. I decided the fish tank was going on top of my television set. The pet shop didn’t have the tank I wanted. So I went to the guy who made the fish tanks, and gave him my specifications: hexagon shape, about 20 centimetres high, wooden base, gold trimming. He looked at me as if I was an alien and said “What the bloody hell do you want that for?” I explained that it was for my gold medal from Sydney 2000. He laughed and said “And what happens if you don’t win?” There was The Voice again! It was coming from someone else this time. By this stage, I wasn’t ready to entertain that idea, so I said “Well, it’ll make a bloody good fish tank, and if it leaks, I’m bringing it back!”
I cleared the space and put the tank on top of my TV. Then Kurek said “Fill it with gold”. So I put in it gold medals from the past, the Erricson Cup soccer gold medal of our strength and conditioning coach Phil Moreland, gold Easter eggs, a gold candle with Sydney 2000 on it—any gold trinket I could find. But it didn’t end there. I was beginning to understand what Kurek was getting at. I wasn’t going to just confine myself to a fish tank. I wanted to fill my life with gold. I wanted to attract gold! I bought a gold camera, gold toothpaste, gold toothbrush, even gold boxer shorts! Around my neck, I wore a gold coin, because I wanted to feel that gold around my neck.
That coin symbolised the gold medal for me. I really bought into the belief that if I surrounded myself with gold and that was all I saw, then I would go gold. I even cut a realsized gold medal from gold paper, and put it on my mirror at just the right height, so that, whenever I brushed my teeth, I would see a gold medal around my neck.
Of course, people laughed. But after a while, they began to play along and buy me golden gifts. But, more importantly, the ploy was beginning to work for me. It began to create such a powerful feeling in my mind and my body that I felt I was never going to lose. Now, people ask me “What if something had gone wrong and you didn’t win?” It’s a valid question. After all, we hadn’t won an event up until then. We’d come second, third, fifth…but we had never actually won.
Well, we had won one World Tour event, but the Brazilians were missing. It was a win we never even bothered to include on our bios. But I’d seen that vision for so long—that wave crashing in on Bondi Beach, the sights, sounds, smells—that there was no other option. We were going gold. It was etched in my mind like a groove in a record. This is the new identity we created for ourselves. It was a script we read every day.
“Without vision, people perish.“
Today, tomorrow and every day I re-commit myself to being the champion that I have chosen to be.
I am a gold medallist! I am a champion!
I will have fun always because a positive attitude gives me access to passion, courage, balance, respect and all of the other universal powers that a champion uses.
As a champion I promise to always participate at 100% of my potential from the beginning of the tournament to the end.
I appreciate that each member of the team always contributes 50% to the result of the team and that without the support and the participation of my team member I would not have the opportunities I
I will always work together with my team mates toward accomplishing our goals.I am the master and creator of my universe and I am responsible for peaking when it is time to peak.
I here and now commit to doing what is necessary to achieve success.
I am a champion. My partner is a champion.
We inspire and empower each other to be the best we can possibly be.
We set our own standard.
When my partner does something great I am happy and I am inspired to greatness because I know that together, at our best, no one in the world can stand in our way.
This is what I believe and this is what I know.
I AM A CHAMPION!
I AM A GOLD MEDALLIST!
Prepare space in your life so you’re ready to receive the things you desire.
Having a dream isn’t enough. We need to do as much as we can to put ourselves inside that dream. Immerse yourself in the dream.
Worrying about what other people think is useless! Their dreams and goals are not yours. Don’t concern yourself with what others think. It’s what you think that matters. Your voice has the power to override others.