WOODEN’S PYRAMID OF SUCCESS A Philosophy That Produced Extraordinary Results

Wooden Champion

“I am just a common man who is true to his beliefs.” – Coaching Legend John Wooden

After taking a position teaching high school English at the age of 24, John Wooden soon grew frustrated with the grading system he was required to use and felt compelled to help his students better understand success as a result of effort. He thought of his father’s advice, that he should, “Never try to be better than anyone else, but never stop trying to be the best you can be.” He remembered his high school math teacher, Mr. Scheidler, and his essay challenge to define success. Then Wooden recalled a verse of poetry he had recently read:

At God’s footstool to confess,
A poor soul knelt and bowed his head.
“I failed,” he cried. The Master said,
“Thou didst thy best, that is success.”

A Definition Coined

These influences helped Wooden coin his definition of success:

“Success is peace of mind, which is a direct result of self-satisfaction in knowing you made the effort to do your best to become the best that you are capable of becoming.”

A Pyramid Created
The definition satisfied Wooden for a short while, but he quickly realized it was insufficient. He needed something more concrete – more visual. So he spent the next 14 years identifying 25 behaviors he believed were necessary to achieve his idea of success. This search culminated in a simple but profound diagram Wooden called “The Pyramid of Success”, which he completed in 1948. Nearly six decades later these foundational behaviors have weathered the test of time - unchanged, full of wisdom, as rock-solid as the first day Coach established the cornerstones of Industriousness and Enthusiasm.

Wooden Success Pyramid

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3 Responses to “WOODEN’S PYRAMID OF SUCCESS A Philosophy That Produced Extraordinary Results”

  1. January 3, 2024 at 1:04 pm #

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  2. Shenzee
    June 26, 2023 at 12:05 am #

    Nice insights about success in life.. :)

  3. results life coach
    July 9, 2023 at 9:43 pm #

    i think PASSION should be added in the pyramid of success. it is one of the fundamentals of achieving what you want to become..may it be with your personal life or career..

    the quote on success is very meaningful..success is definitely peace of mind.

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