What drove Michael Jordan to be the best? Let’s read, shall we…
“When I got cut from the varsity team as a sophomore in high school, I learned something. I knew I never wanted to feel that bad again. I never wanted to have that taste in my mouth, that hole in my stomach…”
Michael Jordan – perhaps the greatest basketball player ever – was cut from his high school basketball team. And he became a man filled with rage. The object of his anger became the high school coach that cut him – a man by the name of Clifton Herring. When Jordan was inducted into the Hall of Fame, some thirty years later, he still had animosity towards Herring:
“…he [Jordan] flew his old high school teammate, Leroy Smith, to Springfield for the induction. Remember, Smith was the upperclassman his coach, Pop Herring, kept on varsity over him as a high school sophomore. He waggled to the old coach, “I wanted to make sure you understood: You made a mistake, dude.”
Now Michael Jordan is a legend, a man overflowing with self-esteem. His accomplishments are myriad (a plethora dare I say). But what created Jordan’s self-esteem? What was the initial seed? What was the impetus? It’s quite simple, my friends.
REVENGE. The desire to demolish the detractors. The urge to counterpunch, to dissemble those who dared to question his greatness. And from this urge – the desire for REVENGE – Jordan became one of the greatest basketball players ever (if not the best).
The happiness merchants will tell your otherwise. They peddle self-esteem products, trying to drug you with feel-good platitudes. The lies are like sugary sweets; they taste good right away, but then you burn out. Eventually, you’re back to the same place; you feel shitty about yourself.
Realize this: it’s how you REVENGE the negative commentary that feeds your greatness. It’s the desire prove people wrong that sends you to the gym at 2:00 AM. It’s the desire to prove people wrong that makes you study all night. It’s the urge to fight back, to battle relentlessly, that sets you apart.
REVENGE is the father of self-esteem.