Today, Joseph Schooling made history by becoming the first Singaporean Olympic gold medallist and he did it in amazing fashion- broke an Olympic record, beat his childhood idol the legendary Michael Phelps as well as being the only one in the race to go under 51 seconds.

That is so incredible. And he did it despite being away from home for so long and having to deal with crap like deferring NS. Oh yes, and it’s still stupid that some people think he’s a foreign talent because his family name is ‘Schooling’. I wonder who these people are and do they even know that we have Eurasians in our society. Big props to his family for having the courage to allow their son to pursue his dreams. I’m sure that when Joseph Schooling was a kid, he didn’t jump in the water and immediately produce Olympic record-breaking times. So many people must have questioned his parents’ decision along the way but look how it’s paid off. And I don’t mean the million-dollar prize money Singapore pays athletes for coming home with the Olympic gold medal but even before Schooling won, a nation was united (possibly over social media) and watched with bated breath to see how Schooling would do.

I don’t know Schooling or his family or his friends but they must be so proud and happy for him. Let’s not forget that there are other Team Singapore athletes that may not have won but for them to be there, on that stage amongst the world’s best means that they’ve put in lots of work as well. They must be disappointed that they didn’t win but what they need is encouragement to train harder and bounce back higher than before.

I read Schooling’s bio about how he’s been swimming since a very early age and that got me thinking about how much time, effort, sweat, blood and tears he must have put in. Obviously, support from his family was also tremendous. Imagine dedicating a good 16 years towards being there for another person’s singular goal of being the best at his or her craft. Not easy.

Therein lies the parallels to investing. Start early, stick to the plan and see the rewards blossom like a snowball that has gained enough traction. After all, as Warren Buffett said,

Life is like a snowball. The important thing is finding wet snow and a really long hill.

I’ll blog more about this another time for this post is really about Joseph Schooling’s amazing achievement and the unspoken, unseen effort and dedication that all Team Singapore athletes have put in.