David “The Admiral” Robinson is a former NBA basketball player who played for the San Antonio Spurs his whole career. He is a highly disciplined man partly due to his background with the Navy.
He expressed great leadership ability as he led the Spurs to their first-ever NBA titles. The franchise built the team around him and they excelled for a number of years even after he retired.
Some of his career highlights including winning two NBA Championships, being a part of the 1992 US Olympics Dream Team, and being inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame in 2009.
In his post-basketball days, he’s been involved in a lot of social work to help less privileged communities.
As a devoted child of God here are 9 of his most inspiring quotes about life and basketball:
1. “When you get that signing bonus, don’t start thinking about all the things you can do with $1 million. Instead, think about all the things your grandfather did with $100.” ~ David Robinson
Money has a way of revealing your heart’s desires and your level of faithfulness in managing resources. Money is an essential tool in achieving objectives but more importantly, it’s how you handle the money you have. For some people even if they were given a million dollars they’d still say it’s not enough for their lifestyles.
It’s a deception that is influenced by greed and in most cases, such people never amass real wealth. On the other hand, someone with only $100 can multiply that money and achieve more. It comes down to being faithful with what you do have versus focusing on what you don’t have. This is why having financial intelligence is essential for wealth creation.
2. “I know I will leave my work unfinished. I just hope I planted enough seeds in my children and grandchildren that they will continue.” ~ David Robinson
Whatever you do in the present should contribute towards creating a legacy that future generations can build on. Success isn’t success if it ends with you, which is how most people run their lives, unfortunately. As a wise person once said, you must begin with the end in mind.
Beginning with the end in mind helps you think strategically and forces you to be disciplined. When you have no vision for the future the present is wasted on unimportant things you will regret later. So my encouragement is that you think about your ultimate goals and then work backward to determine the steps to take.
3. “The biggest challenge was becoming a leader and taking our team to the highest level. Feeling the personal responsibility to take the team to the next level. Overcoming fear of inadequacy and never getting down on yourself or doubting who you are.” ~ David Robinson
Being thrust into leadership when things look bleak can be scary sometimes especially when you don’t know what to do. Most leaders go through such a phase at some point in their lives and it’s normal for such to happen. When you learn how to overcome fear you’ll find that the assignment won’t be as challenging as it appears.
One thing for sure is that God never gives you any challenge for which He has not equipped you to handle. Choose to see it as an opportunity to grow as a leader because bigger assignments will be waiting for you. This was the case with Joseph in the book of Genesis when he became the governor of Egypt.
4. “All this stuff doesn’t happen to you for your own sake. It doesn’t happen so you can fill your shelves with trophies or line your pockets with cash; it happens so you can have a positive influence and encourage other people.” ~ David Robinson
Your life is not your own and whatever you accomplish isn’t just for you to enjoy. God created you to have a relationship with Him but also with your fellow brothers and sisters. When you focus on fulfilling your own desires, your well tends to run dry.
On the other hand, if you focus on helping other people become successful, you become successful too. How much better would world governments be if they followed this principle? The world would be a better place. Part of the problem is that people, instead of tying their identity to Christ, tie it to material possessions. Once you know that Christ is your ultimate provider, you won’t have much of a problem sharing what you have with others.
5. “If you forget your history, you forget who you are.” ~ David Robinson
Knowing who you are and where you come from gives you a clearer picture of where you’re going in life. It’s not an accident that in the Bible there are genealogical references about Israel’s history. It is God’s way of helping you understand why knowing your historical background is important.
It also keeps you humble and appreciative of what you have in the present. Many of us can testify that were it not God’s goodness in our past lives, we would be lost today. Having that type of demeanor helps you stay grounded the more successful you become in life. Some people’s downfalls in life can be attributed to forgetting where they came from and becoming prideful.
6. “A well-rounded education has always been an issue close to my heart.” ~ David Robinson
Understanding that people have different abilities and purposes in life is a good thing, especially if you’re a parent. For the most part, in third-world countries, parents always push their children to focus only on their academics. Education isn’t limited to the classroom, however. Inclusive education is a wiser investment to make in your life as well as your children.
Other people excel in extracurricular activities like public speaking, sports, music, etc. Getting exposure to as many things as possible increases your chances of success in life. It gives you a better chance of identifying what you’re great at. Since you can’t always know early in life what you or your children will be one day, get as much exposure as you can to different things.
7. “Most proud moment: Winning the championship in 2003 with a great team, retiring, and going out in the perfect way. Had a great journey and knowing it was the right time to focus more on family and community activities.” ~ David Robinson
David Robinson’s career wasn’t the most glamorous in the early stages but he found success in the latter stages. Most of his career spanned through the decade of the 90s when Michael Jordan and the Bulls dominated the NBA. For a while, it must have been hard to envision even winning an NBA championship.
He went on to win two NBA championships at the tail end of his career. He won the second championship in style in 2003 when he retired from the game of basketball. So if you’re not thriving in the present, keep going and know that your time will come. It’s not always how you start that matters but how you finish.
8. “Preparation is everything.” ~ David Robinson
You never know when an opportunity is going to present itself so it’s always good to be prepared. Preparing when the opportunity comes is already too late and most opportunities are lost that way. Fortunately for David Robinson and the San Antonio Spurs, they were quite prepared when they won their first NBA championship.
It coincided with the end of the Michael Jordan era when their team was broken up by the management. They were also the best team in the shortened regular season of 1999 which was capped off with a title. Although they didn’t manage to defend their title the following season, they won it again four years later in 2003.
9. “I hope the young guys who are playing today realize what they have been given and will take it upon themselves to give back in return.” ~ David Robinson
Sometimes when you’re blessed and have things going for you, it’s easy to forget to impact other people’s lives. When you find yourself in such a position of influence, remember to uplift other people as a way of giving back. It takes a certain level of maturity to do something like that and it’s also fulfilling.
Realize that to get to where you are today other people had to lift you on their shoulders. It’s only good and a great honor to have the opportunity to do the same for others. In African culture, there’s a saying which goes, “Umuntu ngumuntu ngabantu,” which means that a person is who they are because of other people.