Jim McGuinness's advice to every GAA player in Ireland makes so much sense
If you want to fulfil your potential, you have to be obsessive about your sport.
Jim McGuinness is an obsessive character. It's this obsessiveness that was the foundation of his success as a player and a manager.
The Naomh Conaill clubman represented the Donegal Senior Footballers for 11 years as a player, winning an All-Ireland during this spell. He is more famed for his recent managerial success, however, having guided the Donegal Senior Footballers to their first All Ireland in 20 years in the 2012 season. He also won three Ulster Senior Football Championships during his management spell which was between 2010 and 2014.
His advice on achieving success, therefore, should be valued and heeded. McGuinness was speaking on Tuesday in Croke Park at the launch of Sky Sports coverage of the 2017 GAA Championship when he underlined what it takes for any player to fulfil their dreams and ambitions in the sport.
McGuinness referenced that players must do absolutely everything within their power to allow them to achieve their goals. These measures must be taken on a day-to-day basis, according to the 44-year-old.
"My one piece of advice would be, there's nothing wrong with being obsessive about your sport... If you want to be the best, be the best and whatever you need to do to make that happen look to make that happen on a daily basis and create the dynamics around your own life to allow that to happen."
It's the measures that you take as a player to fulfil these goals that will separate you from the pack. There's no hiding place, players know that their playing careers are short, McGuinness encouraged players to make the most out of their youth and the opportunities that the GAA presents for them. There's no point in having any regrets. The work doesn't stop at the training field, according to McGuinness. The work a player does off the pitch is just as important.
"So if you need X amount of sleep or you need X amount of hours on the field or you need to look at opposition or you need to study your own game, do whatever it takes, and just follow that dream and just go and be the best you can be, and if the best that you can be is for your club, that's the best that you could be and it's a brilliant place to be. If the best that you can be is for your county or winning with your county that's incredible, but just follow your dream."
So, if you want to make yourself the best player you can be, you have to revolve your life around the game. It's this obsessiveness that has helped McGuinness to the success he has had throughout his career. If you want to achieve your goals as a GAA player, however small or large they may be, you must devote yourself to them.
Enjoy 20 live GAA fixtures (including 14 exclusive) throughout the season on Sky Sports, featuring expert analysis from Jim McGuinness, Peter Canavan, James Horan, Jamesie O’Connor, JJ Delaney, Ollie Canning and many more, including new addition to the analysis team, Monaghan football legend Dick Clerkin.