What’s My Name? Muhammad Ali: Six Big Lessons I Learned (Part 1)
WHAT’S MY NAME? MUHAMMAD ALI Six Big Lessons I Learned Part 1 by Nick Holtzmen
Recently HBO put out a 2-part documentary movie titled “What’s My Name: Muhammad Ali”. It was a comprehensive look at the life and career of the Greatest of All Time. And while there have been several documentaries about Ali (my personal favorite is “When We Were Kings”, which focuses exclusively on Ali’s famous “Rumble in the Jungle” fight in Zaire with George Foreman), this one still caught my interest because let’s face it- everything about Ali fascinates me. He is without a doubt the most famous athlete of all time, and quite possibly one of the most famous historical figures of the 20th century, transcending all sports.
Anyone who knows me knows that Ali is my greatest hero of all time. All you need to do is step foot inside the Fit Pro gym to see the giant Ali mural right by the entrance to the Strength room.
When I decided to sit back 2 evenings in a row to watch the movies, I did so with a notebook and pen in my hand, so that I can take notes and mark down the greatest life lessons I learned from this great man.
With that being said, I found the movie to be great, just like the man. While most people today know about Ali’s greatness as a person and a historical figure, most do not realize what a GREAT fighter he was. Like Mike Tyson said, Ali was a beast – there was no way he was not going 15 rounds. He was prepared to die in the ring. No man before or since has shown such tremendous heart and stamina in the ring as Ali. I thought that the film did a great job of bringing his larger than life career and existence into a three-hour movie.
So, in chronological order of his life and the movie, here are 6 big lessons I learned from Ali’s life and career, and how they can help us in achieving greatness within ourselves.
LESSON 1: USE A PAINFUL EVENT TO BETTER YOURSELF.
Ali’s inspiration for boxing showed his character at a young age, showing the world that if someone wrongs you, you can get back at them in a righteous way that shows self-respect.
When Ali was 12 years old (and Cassius Clay at the time), someone stole his bike and rather than seek revenge in a foul way, he learned how to box so that (in his words) he could “whup the kid that stole his bike” and beat him in a noble fashion.
TAKE THIS WITH YOU: If someone wrongs you, don’t take it sitting down. Get back at them by bettering yourself. Kill ‘Em With Success, Ali- style!