I was never a athletic prodigy. What modest success I’ve achieved in sport is all due to hard work. But if there’s one facet of my modest repertoire that I’m most proud of, it definitely has to be my strength in visualization. A few years back, I read a poignant Napoleon Hill quoted in a Steven Covey book: “What the mind of man can conceive and believe, It can achieve.”

For as long as I can remember,day-dreaming has been one of my past times, in light of my fecund imagination. As a kid basking at the height of the 1991 SEA Games euphoria, I recalled fantasizing about feats on the pool and on the track, just like my heroes Eric Buhain and Lydia de Vega. Fast forward to high school, I took more concrete steps in achieving my (far-flung) hoop dreams, as I put a herculean amount of work into improving my game.

The second and final chapter of my competitive days prodded myself into dreaming about bigger things again. Amidst the haze of quarter-life, my athletic goals are a guiding light.

Of course, dreams do tend to break the threshold of reality. Many a time have I pictured a billionaire-playboy version of myself, strutting my hurdling in front of millions at the Olympic stage (against my hero Liu Xiang!). In most instances, however, I keep my self-musings at least faintly achievable. In contrast to my younger, less mature days, these visions of the ideal are woven underneath the fabric of inescapable reality.


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