6 Takeaways from Roger Federer

Who could resist watching Roger Federer in his record-setting Wimbledon game this past weekend? At 38 years of age his legendary 20+ grand slam title wins is, in a word: unbelievable.

He has struggled with illness and knee injuries – yet, he still made a tremendous, indisputable comeback.  Regardless of his loss this weekend, his professionalism, humility, and phenomenal performance, are undeniable. The lessons we can all learn from his example are numerous. Here are just a few – and yes, they are applicable to all of us!

  1. We get one body.

We have to take care of ourselves….mind, body, and spirit. Despite his illnesses and injuries, he took TIME OFF to re-group, rest, and rejuvenate. We ALL need to do the same. There is no heroism in pushing ourselves to the breaking point. It serves no one – least of all, ourselves.  That may mean taking a few days off – and no, that does not have to be a ‘full vacation’. It can be a day in the middle of the week – just to give space and time to a stressed out, frazzled mind and/or body.  Or can be integrating a soothing yoga workout mid-day or a full body massage once a month. Everyone is different – yet we know our bodies. We have to listen to our bodies, and heed their whispers.

  1. Believe in yourself.

Folks say that all sports are as much a mind game as a body game. Roger Federer NEVER questioned his ability to ‘come back’. Well…..so it is in our life and business. Nothing will halt a career quicker than lack of self-confidence. Mindset (and yes – that has become a very overused word, yet still relevant) is important if not THE critical success factor for any success. If we don’t BELIEVE in what we are doing and BELIEVE in ourselves, and that we CAN INDEED be successful…then ‘game over’ (no pun intended). Sure, we all have things to learn, master, overcome, and achieve – yet, BELIEF that we can do it – is the FIRST and arguably the MOST IMPORTANT step.

  1. Change your FRAME and your GAME.

We ALL have things to learn and to embrace. As individuals, we change. Federer did a hard reset on his game. He worked hard on his stamina, his backhand, and his overall strength in returning serves. And boy….did it pay off!! Let’s face it: we are not the same as we were when we started our careers. We have grown and learned which help us be a compilation of ALL our experiences. So, it just makes sense that we take what we have learned and integrate that into our lives and businesses.  If we get burned out or perhaps find ourselves in a ‘rut’ – our skills and talents can be re-purposed, re-positioned, and revamped. That just makes us even more than we were when we began our careers….more diverse, more versatile, and more well-rounded.

  1. Life is a ride.

Life and business is a roller coaster. Ups, downs, hairpin turns, sudden stops, and rapid escalations. And yes, that ride can be HARD. Our lives and careers are not all hummingbirds and roses. That is just not the way it is. Yet….if we want something badly enough….we will be resilient. We take the icky bits and turn them into success stories. We take the perceived ‘failures’ and learn from them. That is undoubtedly what defines a ‘winner’.

  1. Why we do what we do.

Simon Sinek made the concept of ‘our why’ a pillar of today’s generation. When we have clarity and conviction around why  we do what we do, this becomes our internal B12 when the going gets tough. It keeps us focused, energized, and disciplined around WHY we do what we do and WHAT and HOW we want to contribute.

  1. The combination of five.

It is said that we are a combination of the five folks with whom we spend the most time. We need a support system of mentors, teachers, friends, and folks that want the best for us. These folks help us ‘rise up’ to be all we can be. They help encourage, push and pull in equal measure, and provide the buoys we need when the surf gets rough. From my perspective, this support system cannot be minimized. In fact, this may indeed be the most impactful variable we can CHOOSE.

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