Last weekend I took my daughters to see the movie Ride Like A Girl that tells the story of Michelle Payne and her quest to win The Melbourne Cup. It was a beautiful film but what really struck me was the sheer level of commitment and work that defined her eventual victory. We often assume that success simply comes from talent or luck but in this episode I want to share some powerful insights from the film about doing whatever it takes to reach your dreams.
Doing Whatever It Takes To Reach Your Dreams
Well. Hey everybody, Jonathan Doyle with you as always for The Daily Podcast. Greetings to you wherever you are in this great big planet. Thank you so much for the lovely messages and emails that I keep getting from people all over the world. Love it. So feel free to reach out any time whether you’ve never contacted me before. You can hit me up on Instagram at jonathandoyle47. You can email me, Jonathan@Jonathandoyle.co. Just great to hear from so many of you and to hear that, you know, it’s funny in the studio, I never know exactly what’s going to happen any particular day, but it seems that there’s often just something that’s going to reach a particular person.
So listen attentively, right? I’m becoming bigger on this really with the amount of reading that I do and audio books and stuff. I really try and minimize distractions and press in because you never know when that one idea is going to come that can be really important for you.
All right. I want to start with a quote. I like this, given my life recently. This is from a Paulo Coelho, from his book, the Fifth Mountain. Listen to this. He says, “There are moments when troubles enter our lives and we can do nothing to avoid them, but they are there for a reason. Only when we have overcome them will we understand why they were there.” Given the amount of time I’ve spent in hospital recently, I like that quote. You know, difficulties come don’t they. They troubles come and we have these, it’s a bit like flying in a plane. You have these long periods where it’s kind of smooth and things are just ticking along and then you hit turbulence.
It’s something about this human journey we’re all on that, there are times of difficulty and hardship. It’s sad because we’re such a therapeutic culture. We have this idea, I think it’s come really primarily through the massive explosion of technology, I think we have this inner sense that we can control so much of the world. So we either control things or we avoid them, right? Very therapeutic culture. So whether it’s food or internet or distraction, whatever it is, we’re often getting very good at trying to deny or avoid the challenges and difficulties of life.
Now, I didn’t write the script of the universe, but it just seems that there is this inner process taking place where difficulties come and if we press into them, if we lean into them, then we tend to grow. Look, I might’ve done it differently, I’ve said it many times that I would probably have not designed things this way, but it is what it is, and what’s given to us is to face these difficult seasons and challenges when they come. And coming out the other side of them we tend to find that, is this growth in this strength.
Now listen, What I want to talk to you about today is I went to the movies on the weekend, took my two girls to see a fantastic movie I want to talk to you about. Some of you may have seen it. It’s a really cool film called Ride Like a Girl. So for my American friends, if it’s in your cinemas there, it’s still in our cinemas here, but look it up, find it, get it online. It’s a great film. So for those of you that haven’t seen it, very simply, it tells a story of a young lady called Michelle Payne. She’s one of 10 children, but her mother dies when she’s only about six months old. And so she grows up in this big crazy family as the youngest child. They’re a horse racing family, so they grow up on a little farm and they were very much involved in racing and all of them in the family pretty much grow up to become jockeys.
Now I won’t, well, I’m going to kind of have to spoil a little bit because the kind of pivotal moment of the film is that Michelle Payne becomes the first woman in history to win the Melbourne Cup, which until very recently was the most lucrative horse race in the world. Very long history, like over 150 years here in Australia. And for my American listeners, again, it’s a huge race. It’s what we call the race that stops the nation. So, she was the first person to win it and this movie tells her story. But what I want to talk to you about particular, it’s a beautiful film, really beautiful. I took my girls and it’s just great. Just a beautiful experience to have time with them.
So what I want to share with you about this particular film was the realization of what it took for her to climb that metaphorical mountain. You know, being the first woman to win the Melbourne Cup’s a big deal, right? I mean it really was. But what’s most amazing is the adversity. There was a moment in the film and I sort of only just caught a couple of snippets of it, but they list how many races that she was in. Then they list these other things like, how many broken bones and the parts that I saw, just before it went off the screen, she raced in over 3,200 races before winning the Melbourne Cup. Now, those 3,200 races, almost all of them were in the middle of nowhere in country Australia riding in these low grade races, often driving hours and hours and hours to get there and, and just all this adversity that she went through, she had a terrible fall, had a brain injury at one point.
And really what struck me was this thought that to achieve anything extraordinary, to create anything extraordinary requires really a lot of us. And I just want to remind us of that because again, I think we kind of go through life often with pretty low expectations. And then we see these movies and why do they speak to us? Why do they even work? It seems to me there’s something inside us as humans that it resonates with when we see these amazing people doing this incredible stuff. We’re like, “That could be me.” You know, that kind of speaks to something in us.
So what I want you to think about today is just to remind you that to do anything significant in this life, if you want to. Now, I’m not saying that you’re a failure if you don’t by any stretch. I’m just saying that we have to understand that to do anything significant, like what? Well, we immediately think of like, doing something incredible, world famous, like building an amazing company or becoming a great politician or writer. It’s not just that. It’s like to build a great marriage, to raise great kids, to be an amazing friend. Often anything significant requires a great deal of us. So it took her 3,200 races and 17 broken bones to get where she wanted to get to. But you have to understand that wherever you want to get to is going to demand a lot of you.
You know, I love doing the Daily Podcast and over the years the places I’ve been when I’ve just gone, “Oh my gosh, I’ve got to get it done.” Hotel rooms in San Francisco, toilets on Australia’s gold coast, airport lounges, places where I’ve just gone, “you know what? I’m committed to this, I’m going to get it done.” And now like this has been going for a long time. And I was thinking watching her movie, I thought, “I don’t care. I’ll keep going.” Maybe a decade, maybe it’ll be 10 years before this podcast really just takes off and everyone goes, “Wow, this is a really helpful podcast. When did it start?” “Oh, you know, about 15 years ago.”
Just that constant commitment to going the distance to do anything that’s significant and meaningful in life. So I like to say to people, “It’s never what we do on one day, any given day that matters. It’s what we do every day.” It’s whether we’re going to walk out the significant disciplined steps of doing something worthwhile with our lives. And you know, Michelle Payne, there’s a moment where everybody’s like, “Wow, she won the Melbourne Cup and this is incredible moment.”
Sure. But where was everybody when she was like driving at 2:00 am, to these remote country race tracks to finish last. And there’s a scene in the film, it’s like Groundhog Day. You see her waking up hitting the alarm at 3:00 am every day. 3:00 am, you got to be there for track work. 3:00 am, where was the crowd then? They just weren’t. You know, we see these moments of success, but we never see the years and years and years of mastering the craft. That’s so significant.
You know, I love this story, I’m going to be in Baltimore in April for the NCA keynote again. And as you know, I’ve got 10,000 people in the room and everyone’s like, “Well it’s 10,000 people, you don’t get nervous and all this stuff and what’s it like, you get to meet all these people.” I go, “Yeah, but let me tell you about the time I spoke in Collinsville.” Which some Australian listeners would know, it’s a pretty remote Outback mining town. And when I was scheduled to speak there, there were two guys and a dog. Two guys and a dog. That’s who came to the event. Two guys and a dog. No, really these old men, they came and had a dog with them.
And everyone’s, I mean, I had a great time. I still gave it 100% but there was no massive crowd. There was no huge pats on the back. It’s what you’re doing every day. It’s walking out the small stuff that eventually leads, you know, how do you have a 40-50 year marriage? Karen’s parents are amazing. They’ve been married almost 50 years, but I still watch these small things that he does just to keep putting her first. So we see the 50 year anniversary, and everyone’s like, “Oh my gosh, 50 years, you’re amazing.” I’m going. “Yeah, but you didn’t see the billions of little things that made it happen.”
All right, that’s enough from me. So what’s the summary here? Great stuff happens because it takes time and because it takes commitment and it takes patience and it takes suffering. And it takes self doubt and it takes taking one more step when you convinced you can’t. So wherever you’re at today in your life, whatever you’re facing, keep going. Just keep on going, keep doing the meaningful, worthwhile stuff in relationship, in work and study and spirituality in whatever is significant for you.
All right. That’s it. Come and find me, as always, Instagram, jonathandoyle47. Facebook at The Daily Podcast with Jonathan Doyle and the website. jonathandoyle.co Make sure you’ve subscribed to this podcast where ever you’re listening right now. Make sure you’ve subscribed at Apple podcast, so you’re getting the updates. Google podcasts, Spotify, you’ll find me there and as always, would you do one thing for me? Would you take, wherever you here in this and we would you send it to some people? Would you post it on your Facebook feed and say, listen to this? That’d be awesome. Friends, God bless you. My name is Jonathan Doyle. The best is ahead. It is not behind. This has been The Daily Podcast and I’m going to have another message for you tomorrow.