CNN recently reported that Michael Jordan hit billionaire status, becoming the only athlete with a net worth being equal to or exceeding a billion dollars. So what makes “His Airness” so different than you besides his wealth, accolades and inspiring millions in the process?
I propose to you that the answer is… NOTHING. More, I propose to you that his wealth, accolades and inspiring millions in the process came as a direct result of some very specific actions he did that I’ll list at the bottom of this article.
I wanted to “BE LIKE MIKE” growing up like every other kid in the 80s and 90’s. I wanted to wear J’s instead of my downtrodden Attack Force my mother picked up for me at PayLess. I’ve watched the numerous Sports Illustrated and ESPN back stories on his childhood, life, work ethic and championship runs. I’ve seen folks stand in line in the rain for days just to buy his $200 Retros. Heck, I remember one particular guy on my basketball team in high school fought someone in our courtyard because they spilled chocolate milk on his Jordans… on accident.
Can I do what Jordan did and continues to do today? The answer is easy, NO. He has a very unique skill set, talent and business acumen that I do not possess. So why am I ranting on Michael Jordan again? Why write about someone who is a billion times more richer than me and one of the most beloved athletes of all time? The answer is easy, I’m inspired by him.
He is arguably the best player to ever play professional basketball. More, he’s irrefutably one of the top 10 athletes of all time, regardless of the sport and decade.
However, Michael Jordan is still no different than you and I. That is, if you can get past his accomplishments.
It was all a dream… – Biggie
He started his pursuit to greatness with a dream. And as he took steps toward achieving his dream(s) he developed and trained his God-given talents to grow stronger, smarter and larger than life. His character, smarts and talents drew him opportunity, influence, fame and fortune. And guess what, we all have God-given talents and a will. What we choose to do with our God-given talents and will is not on God or Jordan but us. That’s why I can confidently say, you and I are not much different than Jordan.
We often spend our time chasing stuff that God never intended for us to chase. We find ourselves being hostages to the dreams of others through our lack of trust in God and insecurities. More, we don’t take action on our dreams because somewhere in our past something zapped our confidence and self esteem. We have actually bought into the lie that we’re too deficient to achieve our God-given dreams. It’s not about being trying to be good enough at a skill, talent or craft in order to achieve your dreams. It’s about hearing, believing and obeying God and walking out the thing/dream he put in your heart. And as you live out what you see in your hard you’ll develop the necessary components along the way to help you realize your goals.
Here are 5 takeaways from Michael Jordan’s life that you can immediately put into action/play as you began to understand the answer to your Billion Dollar Question:
- Jordan was/is passionate. I remember watching him sink The Shot over Craig Ehlo (who my dad played against, love you pop) in Game 5 in the 1989 Eastern Conference Championship, running, jumping into a flying kick and pumping his fist all while Ehlo was falling down on the court in disbelief. Or the pull-up jumper at the freethrow line in game 6 over Russell in 1998 Finals to win the Championship.
- He was/is coachable! He had a number of people pour honesty, integrity, life lessons and developmental tools into his life regarding his game and conduct as a man, businessman and athlete.
- Before Michael Jordan transcended the game of basketball he had to learn the fundamentals of the game. After all you have to dribble before you can crossover. Anyone who has followed Jordan knows that he didn’t make the high school varsity basketball team as a sophomore. He worked hard to make varsity the following year, averaging 20 pts. a game his final 2 years and then going to the famed North Carolina Tarheels where he won freshmen of the year and a National Championship.
- He was/is a fighter. Every person who has ever played with or against him commended him for his FIGHT. Horace Grant called it the Jordan Factor.
- No one disciplines themselves without a goal in mind. According to teammates and coaches alike Jordan’s discipline was rigorous, never-ending, inexhaustible, bizarre and sometimes out of place in pursuit of his goals. But he did what he needed to do in order to succeed at the game of basketball, life and business.
Discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishment. – Jim Rohn
There are a lot of things I left off this list in order to make a point.
When you push hard to achieve your dream(s) it becomes more than just getting results. It becomes about your journey, your story and how God uniquely carved you out of your mother’s womb to reflect his glory and dopeness through the earth. You aren’t that much different Jordan because you are a human being like him. You possess what he possesses, your own God-given talent & skills, a will and dream(s).
- Be passionate about God and what you put in your heart
- Be coachable
- Learn the basics
- Keep fighting
- Remain disciplined
Now, go get it.