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Not as smart as the next guy? They went to a better school? Their parents had more money? Name your handicap (excuse?) and I swear to you there is a hidden advantage in it. 

Three things that give the underdog The Advantage:

– First off; once beyond basic intelligence (i.e. walk and chew gum simultaneously) EQ or emotional intelligence, is much, much more important than IQ or intelligence quotient. EQ means you are self-aware and self-regulated. You understand and can manage your own moods .You also can sense and understand the emotions of others and respond appropriately. Unlike IQ which is largely fixed at birth; EQ can be learned and raised throughout a lifetime.

– Second, Native talent is over rated. It is SKILL, ability acquired through study, hard work and focused practice that will beat unpolished talent time after time. Native born talent maybe beyond your control, but studying, hard-working and practice are all yours to command!

– Third, Motivation, Passion and Purpose are yours to create and success can breed complacency as well as over confidence. Recently I had a seven point lead, 8 to 1, in a racquetball game; I was home free and in my own mind, I’d won the game. I relaxed, started just giving 100%, just enough to coast on in across the finish line. Unfortunately for me, my opponent did not agree with me. Even though I KNEW better, in the moment I did not do as well as I knew. I was complacent and he cut into my lead, sure that I had a few points to give. Even though I upped my game at the end, 13-13 and thought I could salvage it, he hit two winners in a row and I ended up losing 13-15, a victim of my own earlier “success”. 

It takes one kind of skill to climb the mountain, a second set of skills to stay on top of the mountain. It is all too easy for a winner to lose the drive that got them to the top, rest on their laurels, making it easier than most think for someone still “hungry like the wolf” to succeed in their stead.

Closing Quotes

“The will to win is not nearly so important as the will to prepare to win.” – Vince Lombardi 

“Underdogs win all the time.” – Malcolm Gladwell, ‘David and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants’

“I’ve always been an underdog. I feel like I beat the odds.”– J. Cole, Rapper