Ray Winstone, the London East End barrow boy, who became an actor famous for acting hard men, did some boxing when he was younger. He learned a key lesson from boxing which helped him within the acting world and which could help any of us in any situation.

“You’d go into your corner and have a look at the person within the corner opposite you and you’d say ‘I can beat him’ or have a look at one other man and say ‘I am unable to beat him.'”

Boxing taught you to learn to beat the person you thought you could not beat. Ray had about 88 fights and lost only 8 of them.

When faced with the challenge of acting the role of Henry VIII, Ray, at first, thought he couldn’t act the part but then drew on his boxing experience and achieved what had seemed inconceivable to him.

I used to be not too convinced by his acting on this part but loads of people were. He actually portrayed the thuggish side of King Henry convincingly!

One other lesson from boxing is the best way champion boxers keep punching even when their opponent seems completely untroubled by their best punches.

On Friday March 4th 2005, I watched Clinton Woods fight Rico Hoye for the IBF light heavy weight championship of the world. The fight took place on the Magna Centre in Rotherham, South Yorkshire.

Clinton landed one great punch after one other but Rico Hoye seemed totally undisturbed by the powerful punches. He also landed a couple of good ones of his own.

Clinton kept patient and didn’t rush in to try to complete the fight too quickly. He knew that impatience may lead to disaster. For those who charge in regardless you might be more likely to leave yourself open to a killer punch.

Round after round passed and the fight seemed totally even. Then suddenly, half way through the fight, the effect of Woods’ punches manifested itself.

Hoye began moving slowly and staggering around the ring although he still kept up a brave try to defend himself. The referee stopped the fight and Clinton Woods, after 4 attempts, was now a world champion.

Clinton was 32 years old on the time of this fight and knew that it is perhaps his last shot on the title. He was not the bookies’ favorite but ignored his critics and trained harder than he ever had for a fight.

Boxing teaches that, in case you carry on working hard and carry on fighting even when it seems you might be getting nowhere, you’ll be able to beat the person you thought you’d never beat.

For those who do the identical thing in strange life you’ll achieve ‘inconceivable’ goals which have eluded you for years. You’ll know the identical ecstasy that Woods felt after long years of struggle to change into champion of the world.

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