This week we have been surrounded by fabulous images of Ashleigh Barty and her historic win in the French Open for 2019. The story was boosted by an image of her as a child holding a trophy going viral, with the story of how she wished one day she’d be holding a bigger one.
AMAZING. SHE DID IT.
What has upset me about the story of this incredible triumph is people continually discussing this win as though it came out of thin air. Not the thousands of hours training, the diet, the missed social events, the driving around, the travel, the things the family missed out on to fuel that pasison and ambition. Now please forgive me if I’ve missed great articles written by those that know lots about the sport. I don’t. I am talking about what I have witnessed in a few places, as it has re-ignited my passion for stomping out this bonkers attitude towards Ambition.
Yes, in Australia in particular we have a shocking attitude called ‘Tall Poppy Syndrome” defined as “a perceived tendency to discredit or disparage those who have achieved notable wealth or prominence in public life.”
It’s quite simply bloody stupid (just so I sound really Australian).
It means that SO very many people never for for their goals and their dreams. The fire burning for what they desire has to win over their fears and lack of skills, knowledge etc to get there, but now they have to grapple with other worries. That if they speak up about their dreams they will be quickly knocked into shape by the ‘dream stealers’ and if heaven forbid they should actually achieve their dreams, they will be cut down at the stem by ‘tall poppy syndrome’.
Yes, people are actually fearful of what people will say when / if they become successful. I know. I have been one of those people. F it. Never again.
When we hear children say something suitable like ‘I want to be a fire fighter, teacher or lawyer’ we applaud them and tell them to work hard.
hen we hear someone say they want to develop a way to harness solar power so cars will in the future will help actually generate more energy to be fed back into the grid without causing harm, we probably shrug it off and make a joke about how they should get a job with Elon Musk.
If the chubby kid says they want to be a Victoria’s Secret model we probably make a joke and point at their stomach. Yes, people are this cruel.
All of these things are probably possible with ambition, yet we are so fearful of expressing it.
You can’t get the life you want without it.
- waking up an hour earlier after great sleep
- having the strength to mute the naysayers or not sharing with them
- setting goals (including a really big one)
- finding and working with the best to help support your dreams
- learning everything you can about your dream
- taking risks
- getting shit done, not just talking about it
- having an ambitious circle of friends
- eliminating negativity anywhere you can
- not waiting
- visualising success
- working on any limiting beliefs
- work on your ambitions every single day (even if it’s not your paid work)
- create an environment that supports your ambition
- develop your confidence, charisma and courage (I can teach your how )
- 100% commitment
Ambition makes me think of the Beyoncé song Diva. She is my ambition role model. Ok, to be honest I have a few. I even have a picture of them all in my diary for the year, and when I’m stuck at something, I ask myself what would they do? In fact as I type this, I’m listening to Queen Bey.
When she was singing as she ran on a treadmill or doing hundreds of hours of rehearsal and negotiating her ninja Coachella deal with Netflix she was fired by ambition. It’s in her blood.
You can mark arguments about good ambition vs bad ambition, but for the sake of brevity I will assume that nobody reading this is aiming to take over the world and make Cersei Lannister Queen of the 7 Continents.
I think it’s so sad to be afraid to voice our ambition, but when you read stories of ambitious people, so many say that one of the keys was not sharing their ambition. My question is – when you’re fearful of sharing it, are you actually wanting permission to go for it, or are you wanting to state it like a certainty?
I know in the past I have shared thing because I wanted someone to say ‘great idea, you’ll be fab at that’ – a friend recently told me that my languaging around this kind of thing had changed so much. YES. All this work really does help!
I promise you, I will never judge your ambition. If you want to tell me your wildest, most incredible dream – I will support that. You can email me or dm me on the social media platform of your choice and I will be from the sidelines.
If you close your eyes and think, what is your biggest ambition???
Write it down.
Promise yourself that from now on, you will lead yourself in that direction and take every step you can to get to where you are holding your own version of a French Open 2019 trophy in your hands.