Vander Sanden: Top Five Keys to Sucess

In this week's top 5, I am trying to find ways in which to become a positive Cyclone fan. It is hard right now, but I just keep telling myself to stay positive. Confident people expect good things to happen. This week, I'm going to focus on my own five reasons of success in whatever path of life is chosen. Whether it's football, banking, business owner, or teaching, these are my keys to success.

  1. Confidence


-First on my list of my top fives is confidence.  Confidence is something you learn how to do.  It isn't a sometime thing.  Confident people are often the people who succeed in life.  Whether it is a big game, a big staff meeting, a big work conference, and a big interview…people who are confident find themselves successful.  In terms of Iowa State Football, there really isn't a lot of confidence present, and that is obvious by the outcome of ball games.  Each individual player needs to expect great things to happen.  Each player needs to be confident in their ability to beat the guy across from him more than his opponent beats him.  In terms of football, it is a battle.  Win more battles than the guy across from you.  Sure we all get knocked down in life, but the true test of any individual is how they respond.  Most confident people get right back on their feet and do something about it.  They learn from their mistakes.  They expect more out of themselves.  Confidence can bring all of us a long ways in life, and I expect some veteran Cyclone Football players to start playing with confidence.


  1. Attitude


-Attitude is something that comes from within each of us as individuals.  We all are different people with different personalities.  We all adjust our attitude to whatever situation arises, or we hope to.  I told my high school football players that I can be the most sensitive person, the softest person, and I can also be the biggest prick, and the most anal.  I will admit it…it is very true whether we like to admit it or not.  It is all about flipping your internal switch.  We all adjust and respond to situations differently.  We all approach situations in our own unique ways.  As a football player, you need to be able to flip your internal switch that enables you to perform at a high level.  You need to be able to adjust your attitude to an attitude that involves an attitude of pricks.  I firmly believe the Iowa State players need to play with a ferocious attitude.  Sure we can all say what needs to happen, or which players need to step up, but ultimately, it comes down to that individual being able to flip the switch…bringing an attitude to their level of play.  Confident players can display an attitude that rises to the occasion.


  1. Believe


-This may be one of the biggest keys to success in the game of life, and in the game of football.  Believing is something that you feel strongly about.  It is a mindset that you will accomplish the task in front of you, or that your colleagues will do their job or your teammate will do his/her part.  Believing can be contagious, if you do your own individual job.  When you have your organization/team on the same pages in terms of believing, success becomes something that is visible.  Once again, you can tell others to believe in themselves, and it is great reinforcement.  The key to believing is seeing a vision.  Seeing what could happen, and acting on it.  With believing comes expectations and goals out of yourself and the people that surround you.  Confident people that believe surround themselves with others that share those same qualities, and when you put a bunch of people together that possess these qualities, it can be one heck of a special occurrence. 


  1. Effort


-In my opinion, this is the biggest key to success.  We all walk through our own paths of life with people doubting us.  Those words that doubt us can be degrading.  The key to this is going against the odds….doing what people say you can't do.  Effort takes people a long ways, and we all have to agree, that there are many instances in our lives where we don't give it our all 100% of the time.  I am a victim of this.  What is important is to strive for effort, effort, effort.  Sometimes the most talented people in life give mediocre effort.  Those are the individuals who don't experience a lot of success because of one crucial aspect.  Talented people with mediocre effort are often the ones that get fired, don't experience a lot of success, and often find themselves digging out of a lot of holes.  On the other hand, average talent combined with great effort often reeks success.  I will take a team with teachers, business partners, football teammates that are comprised with average talent and high effort any day.  You know those are the ones you can count on not just sometime, but all the time.  A lot of times we all find ourselves waiting around for others to do the job, or come up with the good ideas, or wait for others to act on important situations in life.  Just remember, great effort in anything you do, from playing cards, to spending time with your family, to taking your son out to play catch; whatever it may be, will reward you with success.


5. Teamwork

-Teamwork is so very important in all of our lives.  The old saying is that there is no "I" in team.  Growing up, I thought that saying was corny.  It is so true and evident in my life.  I learned it through playing high school and college football.  I constantly see it in my career of teaching.  True teamwork consists of everyone working hard towards one common goal.  True teamwork is that attribute that we try to rub off on those around us.  True teamwork is learned, not automatic.  True teamwork builds lifetime friendships, builds chemistry, builds confidence, and most importantly, lays the foundation for success.



This concludes my top five for this week.  I thought we all, as Cyclone fans, could use a little encouraging words not just for Cyclone Football, but for our own personal lives.  Success is a powerful thing in all our lives.  I will continue to take my keys to success with me in my path in whatever I do.  I don't care if it is a PS2 game, or it is a game of cards, or it is getting my masters program done as soon as I can.  I am confident that these five keys will enable me to reach my goals, big or small, and experience rich success. 


Confidence + Attitude + Believing + Effort + Teamwork = Success

Thanks for reading Cyclone Fans…and GO CYCLONES!!



AllCyclones Top Stories