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“In Pursuit of Excellence”: Book Review Essay

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Updated: Sep 17th, 2022

The chapter Journey to Excellence focuses on how pursuing excellence in professional sport can inform one’s personal everyday life. Orlick (2016) defines this pursuit as a quest to commit to one’s goal, acting with positive intentions of becoming the best version of oneself. According to Orlick (2016), there are obstacles to everyone’s ambitions, primarily mental barriers that prevent people from succeeding. The author emphasizes that it is crucial to concentrate on the achievement of one’s personal goals. It is even more vital to enjoying the activities performed in the pursuit of those goals. The enjoyment of the process also makes these accomplishments possible.

Overall, the author argues that excellence in any area of life requires dedication. I agree with this idea completely. Specifically, I believe that mental preparedness plays the most pivotal part in achieving any goal. The ability to focus on one’s goal at the right time is crucial. The athlete who is focused on the race is more likely to outrun one thinking about their issues on the track. This tendency holds for any other activity or goal a person sets for themselves. The ability to enjoy the actions required to achieve that aim only adds value to that journey, helping individuals stay focused on their goals.

There are many examples from my personal experience that can illustrate this point. For instance, I have always lost matches playing tennis at school. At the same time, I excelled when playing team sports. When playing tennis alone, I never enjoyed the game, believing that I would not win. In a team, the focus of all the players, myself included, was on winning the match. Everyone enjoyed working towards the same goal, not wanting to let their teammates down. I believe that mental focus at the right time helped me improve as a player, contributing to the team improving as a whole. When playing alone, I lacked the same motivation, not enjoy the process. The experience showed me that dedication is of utmost importance in sport.

Reference

Orlick, T. (2016). In pursuit of excellence: How to win in sport and in life through mental training (5th ed.). Human Kinetics.

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IvyPanda. 2022. "“In Pursuit of Excellence”: Book Review." September 17, 2022. https://ivypanda.com/essays/in-pursuit-of-excellence-book-review/.

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IvyPanda. (2022) '“In Pursuit of Excellence”: Book Review'. 17 September.

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