In 1992, the USA put together the “Dream Team,” a collection of NBA legends who would compete in the Barcelona Olympics.
If you remember the games they played, then you recall that they dominated other countries. None of the games were that close, most were blow outs.
It would have made sense for a guy like Michael Jordan to coast a little, to let his guard down, and take his foot off the gas pedal.
That’s what Branford Marsalis, the bandleader of the Tonight Show at the time, expected when he stayed at the same hotel as the team.
But in a GQ article, he relates how the experience was just the opposite:
I saw a lot of the guys around the hotel. I saw Jordan sitting watching Angola on tape, just staring, looking for weaknesses. I said, “I don’t even want to bother you, but why are you watching this game?” And he said, “I always take my opponent seriously. I never underestimate anyone.” It wasn’t lost on me that he was the only guy watching the game. (Read the article here.)
The Dream Team beat Angola by 68 points, so why was Jordan watching footage before the game? Because he always took his opponents seriously. I think the same approach holds true with opportunities when you are chasing a dream.
In 2013, you will have some opportunities that feel small and unimportant. It will be tempting to underestimate the time and energy you should spend on them.
Return the emails. Answer the phone calls. Write the blog posts. Do all the little things you need to do to move your dream forward.
There are no small opportunities when it comes to your dream.
What’s something you underestimated this year that turned out to be important?