Career Lessons Learned (So Far) From The World Cup

If you’re not one of the billions who’ve been watching World Cup Soccer, you’re missing out on some key career lessons.  

Now I understand, you can’t watch every game over the course of a month. (The World Cup lasts from June 11th to July 11th.)

But you can get the highlights here of the most important career lessons learned so far from the players, coaches and fans.

(Photo courtesy of US Army Africa.)

Career Lessons Learned from the World Cup

  1. Meditate and visualize your goals coming to fruition — It works!  Just ask US Midfielder Landon Donovan.  He scored the winning goal with just minutes remaining to push the US into the second round of play.  In a post-game interview, Donovan said he meditates and visualizes himself scoring goals as preparation.  Sounds like a great strategy for any goal — with a soccer ball or not.  (Learn more on How to psych yourself up for success.)
  2. Don’t wait to be tested to bring your "A" game.  The coach for Italy dismissed media reports that his team had delivered lackluster play in their matches stating there was no need to play hard because they hadn’t really been tested.  Unfortunately in a must-win game against Slovakia, the Italians came up short and lost the match.  Italy shocked the world by failing to make the second round after having won the entire World Cup tournament in 2006.  Get in the habit of doing your best even when you don’t have to.  It will build your confidence and abilities for those times they’re needed most.  (Read more on Avoiding the Summer Slump.)
  3. Cooler heads really do prevail.  Unfortunately the French team fell into disarray when conflicts between some players and coaches erupted in a flurry of resignations. France failed to make the second round and the remaining team members headed home.  Emotions can get the best (or rather worst) of us if we let them.  When you’re upset with your colleagues or boss, don’t react from emotion but calm down first and act with reason.  It may sound easier said than done but in hindsight I’m sure many of the French players and coaches have learned this lesson the hard way and publically.  (Watch my video on How to Deal with a Difficult Boss.) 

I hope you’ll join me and catch a match or two of this 2010 World Cup.  Even watching on TV, the energy and excitement are palpable and uplifting.  You might even learn a thing or two you can apply back at the office.

Go USA!!!!!!!!!!!





(Second and third photos courtesy of JasonWhat.)

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