This weekend I had the privilege of listening to elite swimmer Ariana Kukors.
She spoke at a National Leadership Conference in Long Beach, and inspired us with her compelling story of persistence, patience and self-belief.
The most poignant part was when she told the story of being a little girl on the swim team, and asking her mom why her teammates kept getting the blue and red ribbons, while she was awarded purple and black. She couldn’t understand. She was working so hard, felt so confident, yet kept placing behind everyone.
What her mother said next shaped the rest of Ariana’s career. It was the perfect antidote to what I refer to in The Source for Weight Loss as “destination addiction”, which keeps us comparing and envying, and painfully wanting for what is “out there”.
When Ariana pleaded for an answer, her mother smiled sweetly and said:
“It’s their time right now Ariana, your time will come.”
That was it.
At that moment Ariana stepped powerfully into her journey. But it wasn’t always pretty. She lost more races. She had countless let downs. There were more tears and broken hearts. But she never stopped. She just asked everyone to believe in her as much as she believed in herself.
And guess what?
That’s how champions become champions. They keep working and never stop believing, knowing their time will come. Every champion has their time…including Ariana.
She now holds the world record in the 200-meter individual medley and is living her childhood dream after competing in the 2012 Summer Olympics. What a gift her mother gave her that day!
Have faith. Be consistent. Do the work. Practice, plan and persist. Don’t worry about what everyone else is doing. Know your path, and let go of the timing. Do this, and you too will move up from the purple ribbons.