Have you ever seen Rocky 3? It’s a bit of a trip back in time but in Rocky 3, Rocky Balboa has been the heavyweight champion of the world for several years. The once obscure and impoverished street fighter from Philadelphia is now living in a Hollywood style mansion.
He’s enjoying a life of wealth and fame and self-indulgence. The day he plans to announce his retirement, he is challenged by an unknown behemoth – James “Clubber” Lang (played by Mr. T). Rocky figures that this would be his final fight and he accepts the challenge.
Rocky trains for the fight in a circus-like atmosphere. He signs more autographs than he hits punching bags. Meanwhile, the challenger is in a meat locker, punching sides of beef and knocking around dock workers and docks.
When the fight time comes, one wonders whether Rocky can reach down and pull out one final victory, even though he is no longer at his peak. The challenger destroys Rocky in just three rounds.
Humiliated and dejected, Rocky tries to figure out what went wrong. Apollo Creed, his opponent in Rocky 1 and 2, gives him his assessment. He says these inspirational words:
“Eye of the tiger, Rock. Eye of the tiger. You used to have the eye of the tiger. You used to be hungry to win. You used to have the want-to. You used to be willing to pay the price to train. You used to fight with abandonment. You used to. But winning led to fame, and fame led to affluence, and affluence led to indulgence, and self-indulgence led to weakness, and weakness led to defeat.”
Apollo Creed convinced Rocky to work out in a run-down sweatshop. Creed spent months helping Rocky recapture the eye of a tiger. And as you all can imagine, Rocky, fighting with the eye of a tiger, recaptured his world championship and yelled, “Yo Adrian!” one more time.
Moral of the story:
Beware the dangers of living a life of comfort and ease because winning leads to fame, and fame leads to affluence, and affluence leads to indulgence, and self-indulgence leads to weakness, and weakness leads to defeat.
Keep a watchful eye out to make sure it doesn’t lead to an embarrassing and costly defeat.
Do whatever is necessary to keep the eye of the tiger in the various pursuits that are important to you.
Do whatever it takes to keep your passion and to not let it grow cold.
What are you doing right now to keep your passion from not growing cold?