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How To Achieve Excellence With Bob Bowman

"Success has a lot of ups and downs, backward and forward. Over time, you move in the direction you want to be."

- Bob Bowman

Highlights from an interview with Bob Bowman, by M.B. Faller

Bowman, the head coach for Michael Phelps talks about the three phases of personal development and achieving excellence.


1. Imagination is where you use your noggin and heart to come up with something that drives you.

Dreams are emotional and should be the catalyst for the hours of sometimes excruciating work that’s needed for success, he said.

Then you set short-, medium- and long-term goals with clearly defined time frames. A crucial part of goal setting is visualizing success, in which you see yourself in a different place. “You’re running a movie in your head of yourself attaining your goals.”

2. The challenge phase is about the process — the daily practice and refinement of details.

3. The high-performance phase is a natural outcome of the process that led up to it. It includes attitude and the ability to work through adversity.

You’ll have to adjust your plan,” he said, and that’s why coaches are important.

The journey will be circuitous. It won’t be what you mapped out, but your coach is your GPS,” he said. “Success has a lot of ups and down, backward and forward. Over time, you move in the direction you want to be.”

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