I spent some time walking through the halls of the Muhammad Ali Center at Louisville. I was slightly awestruck. Prior to this visit, I wasn’t exactly the biggest Ali fan. I didn’t grow up during his years of prime and I simply didn’t understand the complexity of his greatness.
According to him, he was even the greatest of all time.
He was a fierce competitor. An egomaniac (I say this endearingly). But he was centered. Strong in his convictions, with a superhuman ability to focus.
Yet, his amazing story was built on the foundations of a simple poem.
The poem has a lot of lessons, all of which are important to note. Heed its advice and “yours is the earth and everything that’s in it” and “you’ll be a man.”
All of the earth is yours for the taking. And you will make that journey as a man.
Muhammad Ali was lots of things, and as I was wandering through the Ali Center, I noticed that he did each thing exceptionally well.
Yet, he also failed, many times over. His road to greatness was filled with struggle. It is what made him stronger. It strengthened his convictions. It taught him valuable lessons and it forged the person that we know admire.
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster and treat those two impostors just the same.
If you read the words of the poem and let it seep deep into your subconscious. If you spend some time absorbing the magnitude of its instructions.
And lose, and start again at your beginnings and never breathe a word about your loss.
Then you’ll be able to head out into the world and conquer it like a man.