There comes a time when we’re knocked down to the ground, on the path to our goals, and wonder if it’ll ever stop. If you’ll ever overpower the forces of the universe and if you’ll even make it to those goals you’ve set for yourself. Will these roadblocks ever stop? No. But that doesn’t mean you won’t survive. It means you’re on the path to success, where walls pop up in front of you, where obstacles come your way, where people will try to steer you off-course. Sounds rough, because well, it’s meant to be. But the times you’re knocked down is where the best in you will come out.

The inspiration for this post came from this great Jordan commercial:

It’s something we all can relate to. When we’ve been knocked down or have a wall in front of our path, we have to be willing to look ourselves in the eye and ask whether or not we have the motivation and drive within us to continue on. Some of the greatest inspiration that’s helped me in these times has come from basketball.

Grant Hill is one player that will always inspire me. He’s shown me more courage and desire than any basketball player I know. He started his career with the Detroit Pistons and after his first few seasons, was touted as one of the rising stars of the league and a superstar for many years to come. But after six seasons with Detroit and his switch over to the Orlando Magic, the line of roadblocks began piling up in front of him. He played less than 50 games in his first three seasons with the Magic due to numerous ankle injuries and actually had to sit out the entire 2003 season. FOUR years of his career, torn apart by injuries.

But he pushed forward. He willed himself to rehabilitate and get better – and he did. Though he had minor injuries nag him every so often, he came back to a point where we were reminded of the Grant Hill of old. The Grant Hill that was a triple-double machine and one of the best all-around players in the league. Grant saw that in his eyes and he had the drive and patience to continue on his path and around those roadblocks. Where’s he at now? He’s with the Phoenix Suns, playing a key supporting role to their explosive offense and just this past season was he able to play in all 82 games – the first time in his career.

So, tell me, who inspires you? Where do you go when you need motivation? It can be a basketball player or just someone else that you admire. I want to hear what drives you.

Photo credit: periwinklepenguins

  1. Dave Folkens (Reply) on Thursday 25, 2009

    Good points Sonny-
    I think everyone can find motivation and inspiration by others they see around them. Sounds like you (and me) have both had points where sports and athletes can provide some added push to keep going. There are many lessons you can learn from sports and if you find the people that motivate you, it’s a great way to apply some of those principles to other areas of your life.

    For me, I really love the 1980 Olympic hockey team and their story of accomplishing great feats by working as a team. The story of Hank Gathers untimely passing and how that drove LMU and Bo Kimble was another one that really is close to home for me. Days of Grace by Arthur Ashe is amazing. There are many great thinkers out there in the sports world and it’s fun to hear their tales.

  2. Sonny Gill (Reply) on Friday 26, 2009

    @Dave: That’s what I love about the inspiration of sports figures for me, it impacts more than just the sport, but many different aspects of my life.

    Those are great figures and teams you mentioned. I love taking a look back at the iconic figures of past and how those names and their stories still resonate with newer generations today.

    Thanks for your thoughts, Dave!