Did you happen to catch this blog post written by #Plexus Emerald Ambassador John Marble on his Facebook page recently? If you haven't, then take a few minutes to read this.
so a couple of times each year i splurge for decent seats and take the family to a new orleans pelicans' game, whereby occasionally we'll arrive early enough to see the teams warming up.
now, if you've ever sat close enough to touch these athletes, you've probably come away with a better appreciation for their individual talents than what you may have had before. as for myself, i usually leave every game thinking how it's absolutely phenomenal what some of them can do with their god-given athletic abilities.
but back to the warm-ups: have you ever just sat and watched them shoot around, talking to one another, and/or goofing off, seemingly going through the motions, some of them perhaps even appearing a bit disinterested? if you have, you may have noticed that while loose and with no one guarding them, they rarely miss the basket; even despite the range from which they are shooting.
during this time, balls often come at the basket from every single direction, near and far, with about seven out of every ten shots finding the bottom of the net. and of the three that perhaps don't, oftentimes two were actually headed that way before clanging against one another just over the basket; leaving, really, just one true miss.
before one game i even witnessed a bench-warmer... a "nobody," really, insofar as the nba is concerned, make twenty... TWENTY! three-pointers in a row... and then just QUIT and walk off like it was nothing... nothing at all.
bench-warmer or superstar, [either way] i'm always impressed with how accurately they shoot the ball before the national anthem is sung. but then [as always] the game starts and now that they are being guarded, all of a sudden the guy that was loose and couldn't miss in the pre-game warm-ups is forcing the matter, throwing up clankers, and even perhaps flopping on the floor while moaning and groaning (and not even being touched), trying to draw a foul?
now... keep this in mind while reading the rest of what i have to say: michael jordan, the best basketball player to ever don a uniform, made an astoundingly high 49.7% of the shots that he took over his career (during games). in comparison, kobe bryant has made 45.4% of his attempts thus far. both of these numbers (which include numerous dunks and lay-ups) are extremely high for players of similar caliber, but consider this: respectively, their free-throw (unguarded, from 15 feet away) percentages were 83.5% and 83.8%.
the take-home message: the absolute best players of their generations made less than 50% of their "real world" attempted shots, despite how well they may have shot the rock from the line or during pre-game warm-ups.
keep this in mind, too: you and i live in the real world. and despite what we may have to offer others, people are on guard. they guard their minds. they guard their finances. they guard their egos. also, we are NOT the "#michaeljordan" or "#kobebryant" of network marketing. far from it, actually.
in fact, since we're on the subject, here's a little bit regarding how your network marketing career might go using basketball terms:
1. the warm-up:
you always play the whole thing out in your head. "you're going to say this... and then you're going to say that... and if they say that, then you're going to come back with this."
like these athletes,you make every single shot when there isn't a real person guarding you. you're loose. you're joking around with your friends. the coach from the self-help book that you've recently finished just figuratively slapped you on the butt and told you "good job!" for doing absolutely nothing, really.
you then close your eyes and hurl a sky-hook from half court... swish!
you're now bullet-proof.
no one can guard you.
2. the lay-up:
oh Em GEE!!! the opening tip just fell right into your hands and there's nobody between you and the basket! as you get closer to the rim, the crowd stands and yells at you to "dunk-it!"; but you don't want to show off... and you need to conserve your energy, considering that the game literally just started.
so... generally one of two things now happen:
(a) an easy lay-up.
congratulations, you just signed up your mother.
(b) a seven footer comes out of nowhere and rejects your offering well into the cheap seats.
uh oh, your sister ain't game at all. in fact, she just announced to everyone that you can't ever mention your little "thing" at family gatherings again.
3. the post-up:
so you've worked hard for a position down low. and now, with your back to the basket and a defender between you, bumping and grinding, you finally receive the ball.
now... you've worked this prospect down and it's been brutal trying to convince them that you're right, but you're about to seal the deal with a turn-around fade-away jump-shot... there's just one problem... he's much more educated (taller) and smarter (can jump higher) than you are, so you've unfortunately convinced yourself that you have to put a bit more oomph in your attempt... the result? a [jedi mind-trick] brick.
but get this: not only did you miss the mark [badly], the person that was guarding you got the rebound (rational objection) and is now on a fast-break, ready to dunk it in your face... done.
but... he's not necessarily done. nope. now he's taunting you and telling all of your friends about the "scam" you've got going on.
[sigh]. discouraged now, you bravely trudge forward.
4. the occasional field goal:
things are looking up. you might've been otherwise disheartened, but everything is not lost due to the fact that, even though you're having a really bad game, you're still making about 20% of the shots that you take.
and, although this is indeed a basketball analogy, you take solace in knowing that network marketing is a marathon.
5. the free throw:
remember, you make nearly 90% of these shots during warm-ups, but now the spotlight is on you and the opposition has thousands of little neon squigglies that they are shaking in the background. making matters even more complicated, someone just farted into a megaphone.
now you're distracted. the result? you don't even make 50% of these gimmes.
6. the three-pointer:
well, it looks like all of the action is taking place under the basket, so you just sit back and wait behind the arc.
after all, this is the information age and, like the entire court away from the rim, the internet is vast.
predictably, a cold lead soon finds you. the ball pops out, you're loose, and without even thinking about it you throw-up a text-book three-pointer. it looks so good coming out of your hands that you don't even bother to watch it go in, but instead turn and start running back towards the bench, just waiting for the crowd's reaction, and knowing that a teammate will want to chest-bump you after the opponent calls a timeout... swish. timeout. chest-bump.
if only all of them were that easy.
in the excitement of it all, you fail to notice that the other team isn't exactly impressed with your style of celebration. and, unknowingly to you, they plot retribution.
7. the show-off:
so... aside from several key moments, you've generally been going through the motions for the entire game when, all of a sudden, jeremy lin comes off the bench, steals the show, and starts lighting it up, essentially sinking everything that he's putting up... even prayers.
now you're being shown-up. there's a new kid in town... and everyone loves him.
but instead of riding his momentum and bettering yourself, you sit back and sulk, even asking the coach to be taken out of the game.
no go. get over it. you're staying in.
8. the flagrant foul:
get this: in the waning moments of the game, after it's long been the decided, someone that you once trusted just hammered you (from over the back) on the nose when going back up with a rebound. if that weren't enough, then they punk'd you by pushing you into a row of photographers on the floor, causing you to pull a hammy.
now you're bleeding, you're nose is broken, and your leg is tight. you also look ridiculous being carried out on a stretcher with tissue stuck up your nostrils bilaterally.
the other player, the one that you mentored in the past, has now been ejected and is no longer in the game (or with the company). if all of this weren't enough, they have the nerve to slander you in the post-game interview, leaving you heartbroken and gun-shy.
9. the recovery:
the team trainers nurse and massage your hamstring. on the injured reserve list, you sit on the sidelines and simply watch.
it's tough. you miss being in the action, especially when someone maliciously takes you out of the game against your will.
that's not how you ever wanted to go out, so you mark the date on the calendar a month from now: it's a rematch.
10. the mask:
fool me once...
your nose isn't quite healed and it can't take another direct blow anytime soon, so you're fitted with a mask. making matters worse, your hammy is still tender, but you wouldn't miss this specific game for anything.
despite once again playing against your unlikely nemesis who's obviously still trying to hurt you, your mask has peripheral blinders. therefore, you barely acknowledge his existence and go about having not only the best game, but also the best season of your life, eventually leading your team all the way to the championship.
now in the post-game interview your initial inclination is to gloat, but instead you acknowledge a higher power and thank your opponent for their tenacity (perhaps with a wink), which in turn brought out the best in YOUR TEAM.
after all, you're now done with individual accolades.
yes, you've finally figured out that this is indeed a TEAM game.
congratulations, you're now a legitimate #networkmarketer