Being Better Than Best.

If you want to be the best, you have to be better than the best. But how do you get better when you're already doing your best right now and there are other people better than you?

You're already telling people that you're giving 110%. That you are "all in" all the way. You're committed, driven, and willing to do whatever it takes to achieve your goals and improve.

Usually those are just words.

Empty words. Nice aspirations. And fanciful devotion. But usually just words. You aren't really willing to do what it takes to be the best. You just want to look respectable.

Being the best looks quite a bit different than giving a lot, doing a lot, and hoping a lot. It demands that you put yourself in the horribly uncomfortable position of losing to other people.

Being the best demands that you deliberately seek out competitors who are already better than you.

No one wants to do that.

Especially when you have already worked brutally hard to achieve some level of success. When you're better than pretty much everyone else around you right now.

The right competitors challenge you in ways you're not being challenged right now. They do things in small ways significantly better than you can do those things.

Not everything. Just some things. And those things are the reason why you're still not the best. They have mastered what you're still aspiring to achieve.

It's easy to shrug these competitors off.

It's easy to have a perfectly amazing explanation for not getting better. It's natural to want to celebrate the wins rather then work on future success.

One of the trademark characteristics of those who are the best at what they do is that they seek out competitors who make them better at what they are already the best at.

It's a deliberate strategy. Not an accident. Intentional.

They find tougher players to play against.

And then they leave it all on the field.

They fight to win. And usually lose. For the first few tries at least.

But they don't end up staying down. They get up, brush themselves off, and learn what they need to do to get back in the winner's circle.

And that's where they stay.

Better than best.