Remembering Kobe’s legendary mentality

For all the championships, game-winning shots and career accolades, Kobe Bryant may be best remembered for his legendary work ethic. “Great things come from hard work and perseverance. No excuses,

Photo courtesy of: Keith Allison/ Wikimedia Commons

For all the championships, game-winning shots and career accolades, Kobe Bryant may be best remembered for his legendary work ethic. “Great things come from hard work and perseverance. No excuses," Kobe said.

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For all the championships, game-winning shots and career accolades, Kobe Bryant may be best remembered for his legendary work ethic. His “Mamba Mentality” is a mantra that represents total devotion to one’s craft. For Kobe, it was basketball.

His book, titled after that famous alliterative phrase, recounts how he devoted countless hours of time to basketball every single day. He would push his mind and body as hard as he could in pursuit of excellence, arriving at the gym early in the morning and leaving late at night. He would show up hours early to team practices and leave hours late in order to get more shots in. 

Kobe always said his reasoning for putting so much work into the game was because he hated failure;  he needed to win. And with five NBA championships, it’s hard to say his actions didn’t back up his words. 

But Kobe’s untimely death has given me another way of thinking about his motivation. Beyond winning, I believe what motivated Kobe to push his mind, body, and spirit to the very limit was that he knew it could all be taken away from him in the snap of a finger. He knew life can be shorter than we want. But he figured that if he were to pass on before his time, he had better do it having given everything he had in the tank.

The pain of losing such a legendary, inspirational figure may never leave me or the millions of people that were inspired by his competitiveness and drive. Losing someone so young, in such a tragic manner, is always so hard to cope with. But Kobe lived his life knowing, expecting even, that it could end at any moment. He worked as hard as he possibly could at basketball and at life because he wanted to leave the world knowing he couldn’t have worked any harder. 

Kobe’s life may have ended far too early, but his legacy will live on for generations to come.