Paddy Upton

Slow and steady wins the race

Beginning in the early 1980’s, Australia hosted an 875km endurance running race from Sydney to Melbourne, which at the time was the world’s longest and toughest ultra-marathon. Only the best-trained athletes participated, most of whom were around 30 years old, professionally equipped and had back-up support for the race that usually took seven days to complete.

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Towards resolving mental illness in sport

Virat Kohli recently revealed that in England in 2014 he felt like it was the end of the world, admitting the he “just didn’t know what to do, what to say to anyone, how to speak, how to communicate”. It was only after Glen Maxwell and other cricketers had the courage to admit their mental ‘struggles’ that Kohli admitted his, saying that he didn’t do so earlier because of how this might have been interpreted.

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Failure – learning from the best

There is a lot written about what we can learn from how the best in the business go about being so successful. But what about learning from what they get wrong? I recently spent two weeks in Taiwan, watching four World Champions being crowned in a sport that is not much known in India, but

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New dawn of SA surfers are making waves across the world

Jinzung Harbour – The Springboks recently took the rugby world by storm, dominating the best of the best to emerge as world champions. On an entirely different sporting canvas, the same nation’s athletes are taking their sporting world by storm, in what the experts are calling “the South African cyclone”. For the past five years

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South Africa, cry beloved country

South Africa is a country of rich and poor, beauty and litter, generosity and greed, enlightenment and ignorance, Mandela and Zuma, education and illiteracy… and lots in between. Whilst born in that country, I’m fortunate that the work I do across continents allows me the choice to live pretty much anywhere in the world. I’m

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The real ‘mental game’ issue

When it comes to the highest level of most sports, there is a popular assumption that success lies 80 percent in the mind, in the six inches between the ears. Although nobody seems to be able to trace the origin of this 80 percent urban myth, almost every expert I’ve spoken to in cricket agrees

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Sport, a moral dilemma

Sport is so much about winning, especially at the higher levels of the game where results are so consequential. For example, the top team in this year’s IPL received a Rs 20 crore winning bonus, while the four teams that did not qualify all responded by firing their head coach. I am one of them.

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Winning with Kids

Research in the United States suggests that of the 40 million children who play sport when they start school, 28 million (70%) give up by the age of 13. When asked why, it was not the sport that kids didn’t like, but rather their experience in the sport, with the main culprits being their coaches

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To avoid failure or chase success?

I contend that personal mastery lays the foundation for professional success. By personal mastery, I mean turning the mirror inward to look at ourselves and in-so-doing, embarking on a never-ending journey of personal growth and learning to be the best version of ourselves. And this leads to sustained professional success. One aspect of personal mastery

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I’m OK!

Ok, so the last blog post asked us to question our definition of success, and why specifically you we in pursuit of that idea. Having at least a decent idea of the direction in which were headed is a good start; there’s no point of setting off on a journey, especially one as important as

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In pursuit of success

Most people want to be successful. I know I do. However, many are not clear on what success actually means or looks like for them. At the age of nearly 30 I realised I had been chasing a success that I had never really thought about. Until then I had adopted the views society had been selling me, which meant getting a good job, making representative sport teams, earning good money and back then, getting married.

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What coaches and CEO’s can learn from each other

There are similarities in and differences between CEO’s and coach’s roles, some of which translate to the lessons each can learn from the other. Delivering results In general, CEOs have more opportunity to actively or directly deliver results through taking action and making decisions. Coaches do not take to the field and thus cannot actively

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Old school vs new school coaching

In sport, coaches and coaching have been around for ages, probably for a century or more. In contrast, coaching in business has been around for only two decades. In this short space of time, over 70% of managers in the Fortune 50 companies are now benefiting from this new coaching, as the profession has risen to become the second fastest growing profession in the world.

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‘no worries bud’

A colleague recently did a really good job in helping me with some difficulties around a particular project we were both involved in. His efforts meant that things eventually worked out well for both of us. It left me with a feeling of gratitude and connectedness. With these warm feelings informing my words, I sent him a sincere message of thanks. His reply was a brief, ‘no worries bud’.

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A story of perseverance

All of us have given up on a project, bailed on a relationship, quit something that was not working. I’m all for not flogging a dead horse, but something happened last evening that got me thinking about this a bit more. After a few very cold and rainy Cape Town winter days, the clouds parted and the sun popped it’s head out, offering me a small gap to run a Hout Bay mountain trail.

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