Serena Williams Australian Open Champion 30 January 2010
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What a great finish to an awesome Australian Open. In my last couple of posts I talked about Justine Henin's and Serena William's "little voice". And I said that it would be interesting to see who would emerge victorious. By now you know the outcome of that 'battle' and I really didn't intend writing another post on this but for an interesting twist which I read about today.
Today's Evening Standard reported "Serena spurred on by heckler as she equals Billie Jean's haul". Serena said:
"Do you know what really helped me out? This one guy was like, 'You can beat her Justine, she's not that good'. I looked at that guy and I was like, you don't know me. I think I won all the games after that because that's totally rude."
That last bit made me chuckle and if you've been following tennis at all these past few months then you'll probably understand why I found that amusing. Anyway that's not the point of this discussion but before I do get to the point I want to make an observation about perspective.
You see, from Serena's point of view this spectator was a heckler but he may just have been an ardent supporter of Justine Henin's who was trying to use a little reverse psychology to help spur her on. Unfortunately, whatever their motivation, the ploy backfired. It fired Serena up and the rest, as they say, is history.
But here's the thing. That remark could have had the opposite effect and unsettled Serena although I believe that a player at her level should be able to cope with such remarks and other distractions. Nope, it's not 'nice' but it goes with the territory.
And there's something else to consider. This 'heckler' was an external factor but many people hear similar remarks on a daily basis and it doesn't necessarily come from someone else. The remarks are made by their "little voice".
~ You're not good enough.
~ You're too old.
~ You're too tall/short.
~ You're not pretty enough.
~ You're not clever enough.
And so on.
Sometimes we're able to disregard that "little voice" and confidently continue to strive towards our goals. However, on other occasions that negative, niggling, persistent "little voice" will erode our self-confidence and cause us to abandon our goals and our dreams.
As Les Brown would say:
"Don't let someone else's opinion of you become your reality."
And that "someone" includes your "little voice".
Know your self-worth and don't let anyone take that quality away from you. No one knows you like you do.
Don't let someone else's opinion of what you can or cannot achieve dictate to you what you do achieve. If you've set yourself goals that are worthy of you then they will be challenging goals. You cannot afford to let someone else's negativity get in the way of you achieving your goals.
Be prepared to defend your goals and your dreams as if your life depends on it because in a way it does. Day by day the actions you take determine the quality of life you live and the goals and dreams that you ultimately achieve so don't allow some "little voice" to get in the way whether it be yours or someone else's.