I have spent many adult years training for and participating in predominantly solo sports. I approached it with the daily discipline one applies to brushing their teeth. While self discipline and self motivation are skills considered necessary for setting up in private practice, it was playing rugby in the early years that truly developed the frameworks of what it was like to be a part of a team, to be connected to the community of that team and to face any opposition as a team. Being a youngish adult, rugby offered an opportunity to test ones sense of self and a sense of those around you in the club setting community. As a business owner, these qualities are generally not revealed unless they are tested within a team environment, your team environment.
Evidently, I didn’t realise it at the time of playing rugby, but creating a positive circle of influence was something crucial, especially in business. Learning to surround yourself with the ‘right people’ that raise your game, is important in providing support and critical feedback. In saying this, the ‘right people’ are not necessarily the wealthy or powerful folk, but people who have your genuine interest at heart.
Not sure if it’s Nurture of Nature?
I’m not sure whether confidence comes from nurture or nature or a combination of both. However, regardless of the theories, I came into rugby a little shy which is to say is not necessarily an enviable quality for playing quality rugby. Furthermore, in the words of the 80’s band The Smiths “shyness is nice but shyness will stop you from doing all the things in life you want to”. I wanted to play rugby to my full potential. Over time, the constant exposure of playing fixtures and eventually some local rep games, my confidence started to grow.
I still attempt to punish myself regularly either running, cycling or swimming solo and of course in teams. The tenacity and consistency you apply every day in your sporting life is something that can also be applied to your own business practices. Importantly, I recognise and understand that people have their own particular methods- mental and physical, for managing their business, coping with challenges, and overcoming daily hurdles. And all of us, whether we admit it or not, have a “game day” routine that we plan in advance of an important event or job we’re preparing for. Whether you prefer to stay active through rugby, running, walking, cycling or swimming, I truly believe that a sound healthy body creates a sound mind, which eventually will lead to sound business decisions.
Greg Pooley – Director and Podiatrist at MOVE WITH PODIATRY, Palm Beach