Sports are more than a competition between people yearning to prove that they are more skilled than someone else. They are a way to inspire people, show leadership, and reach out to millions of people at a professional and personal level. No person in recent memory has been more impactful in these endeavors than Kobe Bryant. His loss is merely devastating for the world, and not just for sports fans. His life was more than what he did on the court. The lessons left behind by Bryant are significant and deserve to be explored as his legacy continues to reverberate within the hearts of fans.
An Unbeatable Work Ethic
First and foremost, Bryant’s legacy is firmly rooted in his work ethic and stands apart from everyone else in his peer group. Everyone, young and old, can look to him to understand the hard work he put in to realize his dreams. From becoming an incredibly successful NBA star and launching businesses to giving back to the community, he has always worked his hardest.
When you’re looking at Kobe Bryant’s work ethic, it’s important to listen to the people that knew him best: teammates and fellow competitors. According to Michael Jordan, who spoke about the comparisons between him and Kobe, Kobe Bryant’s the only one to have done the work to deserve the comparison with him.
That sentiment comes from an interview with Jordan, considered to be the best player ever, talking positively about another fierce competitor. Jordan recognized Kobe Bryant as an equal, or perhaps someone even better than himself. Kobe woke up early, was the first in the gym, and the last to leave. He’d constantly challenge people to games to improve himself. This is the work ethic of a man that was driven, and it was reflected in his work. His hard work has inspired a generation that grew up watching him. They put in the time at the gym, worked on their weaknesses, and grew. So, for the people reading this, remember to be so good that even your competitors have to give you credit.
Taking Measured Chances
Kobe Bryant was a businessman as well. He was never one to rest on his laurels and instead looked for new challenges wherever he could find them. He took chances with businesses that were going to transform sports for the better. Instead of being locked in with one company for hydration, he researched and invested in a little-known company called BodyArmor. With a $6 million investment, the company grew, expanded, and is now worth $200 million thanks to a partnership with Coca-Cola.
Bryant didn’t just invest money in any company that promised success. He spent the time and effort to see if it was worth getting involved because he never did anything half-way. He invested himself fully and saw it through to the end. This lesson is another one that is important and should resonate with people everywhere. If a person is going to be successful, then they need to use all their energy.
Kobe Bryant and Giving Back
Perhaps the greatest legacy of Kobe Bryant leaves behind in terms of his actions is his charity work. Many people make their millions and never give back, but not Kobe Bryant. He was involved with several charities.
He started the Kobe and Vanessa Bryant Family Foundation to help youth and their families get financial resources in the U.S. and abroad. It was never enough for him to help a few people when he could help many. He opened his heart and his arms to embrace as many people as he could through his charitable works.
How Do We Live Up to His Standard?
Black youths that see a part of themselves in Kobe Bryant and shout “Kobe!” with every shot are left devasted by the sudden loss of a great man. How do you live up to his standards and follow his example?
Looking at the lessons he gave us throughout his lifetime, it’s hard to know where to start. Hard work at whatever you choose to do is the easiest thing on the list. You are only going to be the greatest if you work harder than the greatest.
You have to look at what you’re investing yourself into, financially or personally, and determine if it is worthwhile. If not, walk away. Yet, if you do step up to the challenge, follow through with everything you got. Last but not least, give to others. Even if it’s not money, maybe you can give your time. Or you can give them attention. There’s always some way to improve people, help your community, and give back.
Kobe Bryant left behind an incredible legacy for us to follow, hopefully with some hard work, dedication to family, we can all be a little like Kobe.
Source: Afro World News