Olympia 2012 – “Inspire a generation”
With London 2012 Olympics fully under way now it’s easy to get caught up in the occasion of it all even from the comfort of your armchair!
I wonder if whichever clever marketer came up with the slogan “inspire a generation” really understood how perfectly it captures the essence of the games. Athletes from around the World giving their all in pursuit of success in this global arena under the intense scrutiny of the media and countless millions of followers.
So with true journalistic style we thought it would be a great time to look at the who, what, when, where, why and how of “ inspire” and how valuable that strap-line is to us all.
Who? human beings are infinitely capable of all kinds of action and behaviour – inspiring is all about choosing your own attitude and behaviour. We can all without doubt use the sporting values which the Ancient Greeks established in Olympia and so much of today’s games still adheres to as a reminder to measure our contribution against. Who can I inspire? simply by being true to yourself and choosing to be the best person you can be (and you know who that is) then you will inspire others whose lives you touch. Whilst inspiring Olympian sporting prowess may be predominantly focused on the young, generations of all ages can learn from their sheer determination, focus and self belief and drive for continuous improvement in personal bests and teamwork.
What? the dictionary definition of inspire includes “to infuse into the mind; to communicate to the spirit; to convey as by a divine or supernatural influence; to fill with what animates, enlivens or exalts.” And although Michael Phelps certainly shows superhuman talent in his achievements we are all capable of filling our World and others’ with what animates, enlivens or exalts.
When? Olympians eat, sleep and breathe their sport to gain the performance level required for success. Some perform at that level for decades, gaining success at a variety of Olympic events. What is stopping you from being consistently inspirational in all you do?
Where? at home, at work, at play. In every part of life.
Why? WHY NOT?
How? in all our actions and behaviour, sincerity and honesty make the difference between inspiring and disengaging. How often do we experience people who turn on their service or simulate their enthusiasm to us as customers? If only they realised we instinctively know they are not being authentic and they turn us off! You can choose to perform any task in life with enthusiasm and in an inspiring way or you can simply go through the motions.
As you read this I hope these questions inspire you to take action to reach whatever podium, medal or measure of success you have. My hope is that in the pursuit of your success, you take others along with you. My favourite quote on inspiration comes from Albert Einstein
“Try not to become a man of success but a man of value”