Focus on producing the best: Louganis

Greg Louganis.

Greg Louganis.   | Photo Credit: Amitabha Das Sharma

Louganis says aiming for perfection leads to procrastination

Greg Louganis, the man who mastered an art that no one has been able to replicate in the history of diving, feels that focusing on success could paralyse an athlete while trying to produce one’s best could produce an Olympic medal.

In the city as the international event ambassador of the Tata Steel Kolkata 25K event, the American said he used life’s adversities to do better in diving.

The owner of five Olympic medals — four gold and a silver — Louganis said he became more focused about diving after being diagnosed of having HIV and just before winning two golds in the 1988 Seoul Olympics.

“In some ways it was a blessing for me as I got this disease when I was working towards making it to the Olympic team. So rather than sitting in my room and stir and ruminate over my situation of living with HIV, I focused on my diving. It was something positive where I could pour all my focus and energy on and the pool became my sanctuary where HIV did not exist,” he said in an interaction.

“My focus was not for glory but I just wanted to be the best that I could possibly be. It really put things in perspective for me,” he said. “When you get to the pinnacle of the sport or anything, it may even be arts, that takes your focus and energy. I thought I was able to put my energy into something positive rather than dwelling on my situation and feeling sorry for myself,” he said.

“I keep telling to those who I mentor that if you get success then never get too deeply into it. When you have an incredible performance, it is like a piece of art. It is not going to be reproduced.

“I encourage them to be open and never start judging a situation. It is not about being perfect because often perfection leads to procrastination. It is not the perfect dive that is going to win an Olympic medal,” Louganis said.

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Printable version | Apr 7, 2020 1:31:09 PM |

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