Goal Setting and Determination - Pursuing your dreams
This story is about a well-renowned actor named Sylvester Stallone, it will outline the opportunity that goal setting can create for you and how determination does pay off. Stallone was described as being unappealing to the eye, he had little acting experience and his speech was very slurred, despite all this, one thing was apparent, he wanted to be a film star.
Stallone had a goal and he was set on achieving it. He was a newly wedded husband, he had a wife, child and dog to support so he was under serious stress and pressure to succeed. He landed some small film roles, but they did not give him much notoriety. Not only did Stallone have a passion for acting, but he also had a growing interest in film writing. So in 1975 he put pen to paper and started to write the Rocky film, this film was about the rise and fame of a small-time amateur boxer. He was inspired by the Muhammad Ali and Chuck Wepner fight. Wepner had been knocked out in the 15th round by Ali, but nobody had ever expected him to last as long as he did.
Stallone created and wrote the entire Rocky film within three and a half days, he then hit the L.A. movie sector with it in search of a film deal. Rocky was immediately recognised as such a great story that he was offered $20,000. Wow! You might say, not bad for a few days' work...Stallone actually turned the offer down!
This was a man who only had $106 in his bank account. He had mounting bills and even had to sell his beloved dog to feed the family, yet here he was turning the offer down because the producers wouldn’t let him play the part of Rocky. This was due to what they described as his undesirable appearance, speech slur and lack of experience. So he left empty-handed.
He soon got another offer for $100,000 which he again turned down as he was again denied the lead role of Rocky. Stallone received many offers for the story and the offers kept rising until they reached an amazing $360,000...this offer was to pay him not to play the role of Rocky. But, you guessed it; he turned it down yet again.
Stallone was now living a very difficult life, with terrible financial strain, yet day-to-day he kept his eye on his goal. He was determined to fulfil his dream. $360,000 at that time was worth over a staggering $2 Million nowadays, this offer broke pricing records. However, when he turned it down he left the producers office screaming “I am Rocky”. The producers had wanted Robert Redford or Burt Reynolds, among others, to play the role of Rocky but soon realised that Stallone was not going to give up, he had his eye on the prize. He was then offered $35,000 and 2% of whatever profit the film made and he was finally allowed to play Rocky.
The film was released in 1976, it was a great success and it turned him into a superstar overnight. He went on to play many successful leading roles and became a millionaire, starring in 6 other Rocky movies as well as in the Creed movies. Stallone's trademark slur continues to open doors for him and he still graces our screens over 45 years later. The ever-popular theme tune "Eye of the Tiger", from the award-winning soundtrack, went along with one of the plot's most memorable moments — Rocky's dramatic punching scenes and running up the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The famous scene has inspired many and in 1982, a statue of Rocky was erected. Can you imagine the outcome if he did not have that goal and determination?
Set a Goal and Work towards it
The Stallone story is something that we can all learn from. With realistic goal setting, determination and by taking the right steps you too can achieve. Part of the journey involves being clear on what you want and being committed to working towards it.
What are your goals? Career goals, financial goals, relationship goals, fitness goals or is there something else you desire? Once you are clear on the area of focus, you need to answer this question - How far away from each of these goals are you right now? For example, if you want to be able to run 3 miles, what level are you at now, how much can you do at the moment?
If you are confused as to what areas you should focus your goals on, imagine that you are now at the end of your living years and you have the chance to look back on your life, ask yourself would you be 100% happy with every area of your life? If not, this will help you see straight away the areas that need improving. Now you know where you are and what you want. You then need to start taking consistent action towards achieving your goals. From this, no matter how big or small, you can do one thing per day towards your goal. This means that this time next year you will be 365 steps closer to that dream. Once you have this mindset and you see yourself getting closer, you will find that one thing per day turns into two, three, four and soon ten things per day.
Staying motivated and determined to achieve your goals is of paramount importance. Live your life in a way that aims towards your dreams and they will become your reality! It often is hard to define and choose the right steps towards achieving goals and sometimes we all need direction on that journey, our own personal coach and cheerleader. Take that step towards achieving your goals, you can do it!
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