John Wooden was the first basketball player to be named All-American three times. Motivated to share his love of the game and vision for success, he moved on to become one of the most beloved, respected coaches in the history of sports. As head basketball coach at the University of California in Los Angeles, Wooden won ten NCAA national championships over 12 years. (Including an incredible 7 in a row). He was named national coach of the year six times. Over his twenty nine year career, John Wooden’s vision for achieving success and his skills at motivating and inspiring others went way beyond the sports area creating renown in the fields of personal success and organizational leadership.
Success in one thing creates success in other things
John Wooden’s lessons about leadership start with, “Good values attract good people.” Next comes, “Love is the most powerful four letter word.” The reason John Wooden was so inspiring was because he didn’t just coach his teams and his players on basketball, he coached them on life. In the same way, if any of us want to achieve true success, we cannot solely focus on our careers. We need to focus on our lives and the lives of those around us. And what each of us can do to make the world better.
Emotion is your enemy
Wooden’s fourth leadership rule states, “Emotion is your enemy.” By focusing too much on either the good things that happen or the bad you will be carried away from your goal. Winning a game is great, but if you imagine you’ve reached your final goal you won’t put in the effort required to get to the championships.
Everyone loses sometimes, but if you get lost in pits of self pity and stop putting in the effort to improve you will never win. That’s why you don’t want to let the peaks get too high or the valleys too low.