Perspective is probably the most important thing in life. When you look at all aspects of life, whether it's your family, your job, your hobby or your view of life in general, the vision that you keep in the forefront of your mind is what shapes your attitude and your drive for your goals. Your vision or perspective is the key element that holds it all in balance.
My brain works in principles. It seems like I started to learn from an early age that there were certain things that worked and others that didn't work. It's kind of like a math equation. Three times three is nine, and if you work the math table according to math principles, it works every time and you always get the right number. Life principles work the same way, and they work in every area of our life.
How this relates to roping is that there are things that work and things that don't in this game, too. If you maintain a perspective of operating first and foremost on a foundation of truth, you will develop a strong work ethic. I'm around all the top, elite guys and have been for the last 30 years. There are really no flukes to winning. It's the guy who can focus and have the perspective that it takes hard work to prepare oneself to win who is ultimately successful.
You have to be rock solid in your fundamentals, and it takes an incredible amount of focus, diligence and perseverance to get there. You have to have that perspective, and it's based on truth. In anything you do, the guy who works the hardest on the talents he's been given will succeed over the naturally talented guy who doesn't work at it at all. That's a proven principle in every field.
I've had a lot of people walk up with their kid wanting me to tell them something to inspire him with what it takes to be a winner. There are no secrets. You have to have a foundation of truth, and a vision and perspective to know that-no matter what you do in life-if you make a decision that you're going to work so hard at it that you won't be denied-those are the people who succeed. That's another proven principle.
I see a lot of talented young people come along, but they get distracted by fun and games, and falling into the wrong crowd. Those who get focused, have a perspective and really zero in and concentrate on the things it takes to get the job done succeed in the long run.
In the end, it's not all fun. If you asked Tiger Woods what it took for him to get great, I'm sure he'd tell you he enjoys golf more than anything else. It's not all fun and games to get up every day, grind it out and work at it. But that's what it takes. So you better have the right perspective, focus and diligence to do that, even when you don't feel like doing it. A lot of the stories of great successes tell of how those people who end up winning the most were the ones who persevered through the most difficulties. That shows that maintaining perspective-sticking with it every day and doing the very best you can not to get distracted-is the ticket. It's those little truths that make life rewarding.