How Olympic shooter Karoly Takacs succeeded

November 6, 2013 by  
Filed under newsletter-miscellaneous

Karoly TakacsIn 1938, Karoly Takacs of the Hungarian Army, was the top pistol shooter in the world. He was expected to win the gold in the 1940 Olympic Games scheduled for Tokyo.

Those expectations vanished one terrible day just months before the Olympics. While training with his army squad, a hand grenade exploded in Takacs’ right hand, and Takacs’ shooting hand was blown off. He spent a month in the hospital depressed at both the loss of his hand, and the end to his Olympic dream.

But then Takacs did the unthinkable; he picked himself up, dusted himself off, and decided to learn how to shoot with his left hand! His reasoning was simple. He simply asked himself, “Why not?

Karoly TakacsFor months, Takacs practiced by himself. In the spring of 1939 he showed up at the Hungarian National Pistol Shooting Championship. Other shooters approached Takacs to give him their condolences and to congratulate him on having the strength to come watch them shoot.

They were surprised when he said, “I didn’t come to watch, I came to compete.” They were even more surprised when Takacs won!

The 1940 and 1944 Olympics were cancelled because of World War II. In 1948, he qualified for the London Olympics.

At the age of 38, Takacs won the Gold Medal and set a new world record in pistol shooting. Four years later, Takacs won the Gold Medal again at the 1952 Helsinki Olympics. Takacs – a man with the mental toughness to bounce back from anything.

Karoly TakacsInstead of focusing on what he didn’t have – a world class right shooting hand, he decided to focus on what he did have – incredible mental toughness, and a healthy left hand that with time, could be developed to shoot like a champion.

Winners in every field have a special trait that helps them become unstoppable. A special characteristic that allows them to survive major setbacks on the road to success.

Bouncing back is not enough. Winners bounce back QUICKLY. They dust themselves off, and pick up where they left off…

– fwd: samuel m. / vathan shettigar

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