The will to do something is dramatically impacted by your belief that you actually can do something. No one is very motivated to attempt something they think they’re going to fail at.
And that speaks to the power of belief.
Having won a few championships and played a winless season as well, I can tell you the team that thinks they are beat is beaten. And an individual who believes they’re beat is beaten.
Now on the other side of the equation, a person who believes they are going to prevail usually does. The belief they have gives them motivation, inspiration, energy, determination and perseverance – even in the face of daunting obstacles.
So what gives people and teams that belief?
Sometimes it is just naivety. People don't realize they’re not supposed to make it. Bill Clinton, James Carvelle and George Stephanopoulos were so green in national politics the didn’t realize the futility of their quest to reach the presidency. So they made it. I’ve been on teams that were too stupid to know we were supposed to lose, so we won.
Sometimes it’s confidence based on experience. If you have made earlier objectives, beaten a team before, or excelled on a world-class level – you build confidence at each step of the process, and that creates belief. I was on a softball team that won 27 games in a row, becoming champion in three straight tournaments. We just built confidence from the first win and kept growing it. We won because we expected to.
Sometimes belief is simply programmed into you. It could be in your formative years you are programmed by parents, school, religion or a cult that you are divinely blessed and are here to overcome. Depending on the source, this could be positive or very negative.
Sometimes we borrow belief from others. If someone you respect tells you that you’re capable of accomplishing something -- that will sometimes put you over the top in the belief account. (Which is why I write this blog for you guys every day!)
Finally, sometimes belief simply comes from a leap of faith. You marshal together ten, 20 or 30 seconds of courage, and you tap into that adrenaline to just go for it, results be damned. You sell yourself on the belief and burn your ship. You take away the retreat possibilities, which forces you to be courageous, and you find belief from the fires of your courage.
Thoughts? What about you? What are the best ways you harness belief for yourself? Please share your thoughts with the community.