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Why winners always quit

“Winners never quit.  Quitters never win.” –Vince Lombardi, Green Bay Packers head coach 1959-67

Trey Finley

Sorry, Vince.  I’m going to go out on a shaky brittle limb and disagree with a Hall of Fame coach.  You see, quitting is in every winner’s vocabulary.  Here’s just a few examples of people you would have loved coaching, but who quit:

Michael Jordan, John Elway, Too Tall Jones.  They quit.  They’re quitters.  Jordan quit basketball, then quit baseball three years later.  John Elway quit baseball.  Ed Jones quit football after four years to box.  He also quit boxing in spite of being undefeated. Countless major league baseball players either quit pitching to hit or quit hitting to pitch.

But what about those who try to be “well-rounded?”  Maybe even great at two things?  In my experience, raw talent refined and perfected will beat unlimited determination and “well rounded” every time.

Take Bo Jackson, for instance.  Bo Jackson was a decent baseball player (lots of home runs, but not a great hitter) and a great running back, but lacks the stats in either sport to be considered among the greatest.  What did NOT quitting cost him?

Bo Jackson was good, perhaps even very good in two sports.  But never great.  Never the best.  Never exceptional.  Bo was a once-in-a-generation athlete who will likely go down in sports history as “just a guy.”

Here’s what I know about winners who quit:  They know exactly WHEN and WHAT, and WHY to quit.

Tiger Woods is a great example.  This quote from an article in Golf Digest:

As Woods achieved things no one had ever done, he did something else no champion golfer has ever done: From the top of the game, he committed to an overhaul of his swing. Not once, but twice, and each time after a historic feat: first after winning the Masters by 12 strokes in 1997, and then soon after winning seven of 11 majors in a run that ended in 2002.
Read More http://www.golfdigest.com/golf-instruction/swing-sequences/2011-04/evolution-of-tigers-swing#ixzz2VBmWQePb

Tiger, the golfer who along with Jack Nicklaus and Arnold Palmer is considered the greatest golfer of all time, changed what he was doing while at the top of his game.  Why?  He wasn’t satisfied.  Good enough wasn’t.  Great past results were just that—the past.  He knew WHAT, WHEN, and WHY to quit.

Michael Jordan quit basketball after winning the first three of his six NBA championships.  His reason for quitting?  His dad had wanted him to be a baseball player.  His dad was murdered during the third of this three championship runs.  Following that championship, he talked about basketball feeling pointless and empty.   At the risk of being unfair, Michael Jordan’s WHAT, WHEN, and WHY for quitting basketball in 1994 were wrong.

Why did he quit again three years later, returning to basketball? Well, it might have had something to do with him having a hard time batting .200.  He knew he had to quit baseball (WHAT) before his athletic prime was up (WHEN) to return to what he loved most and did best (WHY).

Was Vince Lombardi wrong?  Maybe, maybe not.  I think we know the spirit of what he had to say.  Every athlete and business leader I’ve mentioned had a deep desire to succeed.  For better or worse, it was the most important thing to them.

So let’s close with this—how do these principles apply to YOUR business specifically?   What do you need to quit, when will you quit it, and why must you quit it?

By Blue Ribbon News special contributor Trey Finley of Rowlett, a business coach certified through ActionCOACH, the world’s #1 business coaching franchise, ranked #77 on Entrepreneur’s list of franchises worldwide. Visit his website at rockwallbusinesscoach.com or on Facebook at facebook.com/actioncoachtrey.

READ MORE FROM TREY FINLEY:

7 things I learned from my 7 year old about entrepreneurship 

Old things ain’t so bad afterall

Profit = G Squared

‘I’ve got a bad feeling about this’

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