It is very curious the way I was taught what I could call today like my early leadership lessons from a man who fought all his life to be at the position he was. That man of an average size, with a black shining skin, a lively look is my father. To him, nothing is given,as we know, therefore to reach out a goal, it is obvious that one’s must reflect, measure possible conséquences and effects of each decision to make before taking action. That is what he did went he early left the village after the end of World War 2, and the stop of forced labor by the colonizer, to Ghana in order to learn English and as a futur bilingual worker, become in the late 1970’s the special interpreter of president Sangoule Lamizana of Upper Volta (former name of Burkina Faso). But what is interesting is how he made me understand how to control myself and act upon my environment through his best hobby, what is Boxing. To him life could be compare as a game of boxing. He explained to me how to be in life through the way a boxer behave on the ring. Before the game, training yourself, eating healthy, making exercise, taking care of your body within the mind that you want to do the best to be successful face to your challenger that is the preparation. During boxing being focused, calculate in mind what each force spending in a punch on your challenger would cost you and whether or not you will touch your objective and for which effects; that is the decision making and facts handling. In life he tried to explain how he did regarding what said above. You can receive bad punches, you may sometimes lose your confrontations but you may never give up, since you know you are still improving you skills and doing all your best every time (faith,courage and sense of proactivity). And one day what you compiled as knowledge and experience in addition to your inner strong, will get you to success, winning competition and standing in the methods that bring success to you (the end in mind) Then he took courage in his youth, and started a long journey because to him, his success is a guarantee for his future family and his close relative in a country ruled by colonizer. He worked hard, slept early, saved money for his housing, went to school, learned English and then strengthened by all the knowledge acquired during his journey (the preparation) he went back home. The challenge was to earn a good job, so he didn’t waist his money to gather needed document for all the offers, because money was not given at that time and he had to make sure that his choice will be the right one according of what he has been preparing himself for. He failed in his first steps loking for job but stayed unshakeable, (faith, courage of the boxer) Then the second of his 3 choices worked and he was hired like a journalist for both English and French That was the launching spot to take a couple of years later to diplomacy when he was hired by the minister of foreign affairs (The end in mind since his wished to be bilingual).
What I kept from that comparison he made, are:
-State what you would to be and to do in your life.
-every decision as small as it is will have consequences out of your control in your future no matter what you planned; So think about that before acting.
-Lean on your own strengths, qualities and do not wait for things to happened, it is your job to make those things happen.
-Make sure even when things went wrong for you in your life, that you did all your best. So improving your experience will help next.
One Comment on “Lessons from boxing”
Thank you for sharing your experience Issa. I liked your comparison with boxing and leadership. I believe that sports can teach us many lessons, especially in regards to control, as you described.
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