“Grateful for Everything, Entitled to Nothing”.
This phrase was introduced to me at my first track team meeting in college by Jack Clark. For those of you who are unaware, Jack Clark is all that is man, he is like John Wayne x Ron Swanson + General Patton to the power of Tom Selleck, and was a standout football and rugby player at Cal. Clark is the head coach of the University California Golden Bears Rugby team, who he has lead to 28 National Championships since 1984. “Grateful for Everything, Entitled to Nothing” is the motto of the Golden Bear ruggers and given their unprecedented success, I think it is something worth thinking about.
What does it mean to be ‘Grateful for everything’? Grateful for the good and bad that comes with life, training, and relationships. This year, I get to celebrate 10 years of Juggernaut and it put me in a very grateful state of mind. I’m grateful for the friendships this company has brought me, the ability to do what I love everyday and to help people improve at what they love and all the opportunities that I’m presented with. All of that though is easy to be grateful for and of course it is important to let those people who you’re grateful for now it but it is also important to look at the things not as easy to be grateful for, because as cliché as it may sound, it is those things that will get you to where you want to be.
Be grateful for 90 hour work weeks that truly test your resolve and commitment to your vision. Be grateful for heartbreaks because you learn from them and they come into your life for a reason. Be grateful for injuries and set backs that force you to reevaluate your approach to things and learn how to overcome. Be grateful to be able to live a meaningful life full of ups and downs, I know I am.
That brings me to the next part of Coach Clark’s powerful message, ‘entitled to nothing’. At the ripe old age of 33 years old, I feel a little funny saying ‘kids these days’ but kids these days have a real entitlement issue and guess what so do adults, powerlifters, strongmen and all kinds of other people. Nothing is given to you in life and if you are expecting something to be, you are in for a rude awakening. If you are expecting your name, your team, your gym or any other status in life to give you success, you are wrong. Success is not given, it is earned, it is sweat for and bled for.
Embrace the process of working towards a goal and enjoy the journey. The things in life you want, you must earn them, you must work for them. You must persevere through times that seem terrible and be grateful for what those times teach you. Don’t expect earning success to be easy.
Coach Clark’s simple message, “Grateful for Everything, Entitled to Nothing” has been a powerful message to help shape my athletic career, business and life and hopefully you too can use it to reflect on what you are doing and improve.