Fall in love with the process.
Speaking to young soccer players around the world, I would ask one simple universal question. "Raise your hand if you want to be a professional soccer player." Instantly one hundred percent of the hands would fly up in the air with excitement. I loved seeing the hope on each one of their faces and I believe that some of them will truly achieve it, But unfortunately there is a good chance that many of them won't be able to live their dream.
How fine is the line that separates a player that makes it to the highest level and others who don't? I believe its falling in love with the process. The process of sacrifice and hours it takes to gain enough skill and understanding of the game.
What are you willing to struggle for?
At different periods of one players life there will be trademark events and gatherings that are important to everyone. For example proms, the huge party the everyone is talking about, then later weddings and other smaller events that are really important but you will have to miss because your playing soccer. I had to sacrifice a lot of friends to live my dream manly because I wasn't there to share these experiences with them. It's a lonely road sometimes in the process but the love of the game gets you through it.
Are you in love with the result?
One hundred percent of the young players I am speaking about are in love with the result of being a professional soccer player. It has a great lifestyle that it brings, and if you have certain level of success it can change your families life as well. But many overlook the process of what it takes to get there. The question I ask at the end of many of my speeches is.
Are you in love with the process?