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Wladimir Klitschko: His four success factors for every challenge

Wladimir Klitschko.

Armin Morbach

We have rarely been as honest as this year. “I’ll be happy when 2020 is over!” the new answer to the standard question “How are you?” to be. No more glossing over like usual. The sentence straightforwardly sums up what many of us have been feeling for months: Corona is stressful – be it just looking at the daily news, at a job that is on the brink, or the relationship that is in crisis .

While we are trying to put out fires in every corner, two people have thought about how we can deal with problems better: Ex-professional boxer Wladimir Klitschko and his business partner Tatjana Kiel developed a method that should help to turn challenges into success transform and develop the energy to tackle and implement things.

Focus, agility, coordination, endurance – or “F.A.C.E” for short – is the essence of what made Wladimir Klitschko a boxing legend. Tatjana Kiel analyzed this recipe with him after accompanying him for years. Since 2006 she has toured the world as an event manager side by side with Vladimir and his brother Vitali, observing their routines and strategies for success. Strategies that, among other things, led to Wladimir – the younger of the two – becoming the longest reigning heavyweight boxer of all time.

“F.A.C.E. helped me to survive in the boxing ring, ”says the now 44-year-old. And the method still helps him manage projects today. One such project is currently his first book, which he wrote about the method together with Tatjana Kiel. “F.A.C.E. The Challenge – Discover the willpower in you! ” has been in stores since October. While Klitschko and Kiel got it started, they too stuck to the four “FACE” steps – and here they come.

1. Focus: Who are you and what is your mission?

Before we focus on something, we have to ask ourselves: Who am I and what do I want from life anyway? “We have to be able to call our challenges by their names and become truly obsessed with them,” says Klitschko. “There are so many goals in life. But only one who will achieve it: You! ”This became particularly clear to him when his coach and close ally Emanuel Steward suddenly died at the age of 67. “With him all knowledge was gone. And I knew that I would go at some point too, so I have to share the knowledge so that someone doesn’t come in my place who makes the same mistakes.

In everyday life this means: even if we are pursuing a higher-level goal at work, everyone has to know what be personal contribution to the team and the why is behind it, says Tatjana Kiel. “We always said to the head chef of Vladimir’s boxing team: You can’t make him win yourself, but you can get the most out of it in your field of activity.” Another tip: Say goodbye to multitasking on important projects, look for yourselves the a thing. “As a boxer, you look your opponent in one eye. If you try to look into both at the same time, you lose your focus, ”says Wladimir Klitschko.

2. Agility: what’s your plan?

When you have defined your goal, ask yourself: How do you get there? You don’t need any plan for this, you need your own. Visualize your result, imagine what the success looks like or do it like Klitschko. “I wrote it down,” he says. It is also important that you think about the stones that could be on your path to success. In his struggles, Klitschko consciously prepared himself for possible disruptive factors: “What happens if I am distracted by the press, photos or physical problems? What if the fight is postponed? ”

He had to be able to answer these questions in advance in order to be prepared in the event of an emergency, recalls his companion Tatjana Kiel. “The ease comes because you have a plan. Because you know what you are doing every day. ” In addition, you then know what to say no to – even when it is difficult. “Every compromise costs you time to achieve your goal, especially in terms of the shortness of your life,” says Klitschko. If you’re young, that’s okay. But the older you get, the less you should underestimate the time factor.

3. Coordination: What and who do I need to achieve the goal?

Coordinate your body and mind. “You can train it just like your biceps,” says Klitschko. If you don’t know how to do something, get experts. And that applies to every area of ​​life: you need allies. “There is no such thing as a self-made man,” says Klitschko. In the case of the new book, Tatjana Kiel was at his side; always a whole team during his boxing career. “Even if you only see two people in the ring as a spectator, it’s much more complex,” he says.

Trainers, lawyers, physiotherapists, managers, fans: the success of the story depends on the details and how the actors harmonize with one another. “In a school of fish, every fish is a CEO. They adapt their shape together, depending on what is in store for them, but they all act autonomously, ”explains Klitschko. At least as important is the question: Who gives you energy – and who takes it from you? “There are neutralizers, supporters and opponents,” explains Tatjana Kiel. It appeals to you to become aware of what the motives of the respective people are. “Even if they altruistically only want what is best for you, that doesn’t mean that you want that too, but that you then follow the path of others.”

4th Perseverance: How do I hold out?

“I love perseverance. Perseverance beats talent! ”Says Wladimir Klitschko. Endurance gains through ritual and focus. Klitschko himself says he wasn’t a born boxer, but slipped into the role because he wanted out of the Soviet cage. And back then that was only possible as a politician or athlete. Even if hardly anyone has such prerequisites in life, the message of Klitschko’s story is: stay tuned. Think carefully about how you will manage to implement your plan, especially when the initial euphoria has fizzled out.

Everyday routines help when the first difficulties arise. Perseverance also means defining when the “real defeat” begins – that is, when it is time to end something. Too often in life we ​​cling to projects because we think: “There’s so much energy in there.” But the truth is that such things have long drawn us valuable energy that we could invest in new things. “In the end we always say: Keep living. Life is Beautiful. So go on, you’ve learned something, ”say Kiel and Klitschko. “Your desires and obsession will always pay off.”

Also have the courage to let go

“I lost the fight against Anthony Joshua. I could have called for a rematch, everyone expected it and my chances would have been good, ”said Klitschko. For a hundred days he changed his mind every day. Yes. No. Yes. No. Until at some point he realized: “I’m no longer passionate about sport. My focus was already on my second career path. ” That’s why Klitschko let go. If that is the case with you, be honest: to yourself and to your team. Start over. New focus, new challenge. New chance for you to grow.


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