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Being the Best Version of Ourselves

    07 May 2021

Being the Best Version of Ourselves

I read a the following in an article the other day:
In 1885, a monk set out to run a 1,000-day marathon. Specifically, he and his fellow monks ran 40 kilometres a day for 100 days. Yes, you read that right. 40 kilometres per day! They did this for 5 years. They are called the Gyoja, or marathon monks. And these monks do the impossible.
For the first 5 years they ran 100 days, 40 kilometres each day
The 6th year, they ran 100 days, 60 kilometres each day
The 7th year, they ran 84 kilometres per day for 100 days and then do another 100 days where they ran 40 kilometres each day.
Oh and just to add to this …. during the 5th year of the 1,000-day marathon, they went 7.5 days without food, water or rest. From 1885 to 1988 only 46 men have completed the 1,000-day marathon.
These monks dared to do the impossible. They knew how to be the best versions of themselves. They dared to push themselves to the extreme. They dared to be the best.
It made me think about the version of ourselves that we are striving to be. We often say to the children: “Be the best version of YOU” or “Be yourself, everyone else is already taken” or “You only compete against yourself”.
But on this journey to being a better ME there are some truths and some lies, a BIG truth is that people who are the best, have the confidence to want to become the best in the first place.
So if you don’t have that confidence, maybe you’ve been told a lie that makes you believe less of yourself, one that you have heard over and over again.  Here’s a lie: hard work is all it takes to become the best.
We know that this is not true, when we work hard at something, all that happens is we get good at doing that thing. So if you’re counting pounds at the bank, you’ll be good at… counting money. And hey, you might even become the best at it.
But is it the best version of yourself?
In the book, Elite Minds, Dr. Stan Beecham dives into how great minds think differently. 
This is the Big Idea:
“When you truly study top performers in any field, what sets them apart is not their physical skill; it is how they control their minds.” — Stan Beecham
According to Stan Beecham there is a simple equation to become your best:
The Best Version of You = Purpose x Courage x Control x Luck x Hard Work
It seems that it is not just one thing that makes us the best version of ourselves, but a whole range of different things:
By being consistent in what we do. By having a clear purpose. By showing courage. By failing and learning through that failure. By living in the moment. By relying on others. By managing our expectations. By striving for progress and not perfection – EVERY TIME. And of course by putting in the time to be better once we know better.
“If you plan on being anything less than you’re capable of being, you will probably be unhappy all the days of your life.”
— Abraham Maslow

Kind regards

Berna Bouwer - Head of Prep

Head of Prep Blog News Senior Leadership Team Blog

Head of Prep Blog, News, Senior Leadership Team Blog

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