Kobe Bryant is one of the greatest players and scorers in NBA history. An entire blog post could be written to describe his impressive list of athletic accomplishments. However, it is Bryant’s failures and missteps that are the subject of this post. Last night Kobe Bryant may have played on of the worst of his careers (as detailed here). Many may admonish him, and point to the fact that he went 1-14 as a perfect example that he is one of the most selfish players in the history of basketball. However, I vehemently disagree. Kobe Bryant is human so he will be disappointed and may become discouraged with subpar performances. However, unlike the vast majority of us he uses his failures as fire to fuel his success.
Most of us, myself included, once we come upon resistance or failure we respond to it by backing off or looking for another avenue to pursue. This is a natural human response to failure, but if you want to be elite or maximize your potential in a field you CAN’T respond to failure or rejection by backing off and shrining away. You need to attack your failure. I look at Kobe’s 1-14 shooting night and I am impressed. His unwavering faith in his ability is what separates him from his contemporaries. I do not know of any other players in the NBA that would continue shooting when they keep missing. Most other players shy away and stop shooting when things do not go their way. It is Kobe’s relentless drive and ability to push through adversity and setbacks that have made him one of the greatest players in NBA history.
How you can apply this “mamba mentality” to your life. Instead of being fearful of failure or making mistakes, you need to aggressively attack your limits and relish the defeats and set backs you experience. It is during these failures that you learn what you are really made of and when you truly become acquainted with who you are. You do NOT learn or become better when you are succeeding. It is failure that provides the impetus for you to improve and to evolve to new levels. You should not desire failure but seek out and attack your limits which will require you to confront failure and setbacks head on. Societal conditioning has ingrained in us that failure is bad and should be avoided at all cost. This is absolutely garbage. You should love failure because the negative feedback you get is the most real feedback you will ever get that will allow you to become the best you can be.