The Success Formula
By Bob Popp
Sometimes as bass fishermen we need to have things spelled out for us to be successful. Or to put it another way we need a formula for success. You would be surprised to know it is not as difficult as a calculus problem, even though sometimes we make it so.
What is your favorite lure? For example my favorite lure is a spinnerbait. The reason? I have had great "Success" with a spinnerbait! The key word is "Success"! You can say I have great "Confidence" in a spinnerbait because of that "Success". Confidence and Success, two words that go hand-in-hand in bass fishing.
How do you get to the point of having great "Confidence" in a lure or in your ability to find and catch bass for that matter? When I first started bass fishing, I didn't have the confidence that I have now in different baits and my ability. I started out like most, and did a lot of experimenting in the early days. I did not have much success at first. But I had one very important character, and that is "Persistence"; I was determined to succeed.
So, what is the key to this success? I have come up with a formula for success and that is: Preparation + Persistence = Success
What does being a successful bass fisherman mean? Is it winning the Bassmaster Classic or does it mean catching bass on all of your fishing trips? Being successful will have a different meaning for each fisherman. You must determine what your definition of being successful is. It is very important to determine this before proceeding with the first two parts of this formula.
We must know what results we are looking for, so that we know when have achieved it. How can we become successful if we don't know what being successful actually is? It may seem strange to start with the result of a formula but we must know what the sum of the other two parts of the formula we want to achieve.
This is a very important issue that many overlook. Many fishermen depend on having good luck to be successful. I define luck as, "When preparation meets opportunity." Which means the better I prepare and the more on the water experience I get, the luckier I become.
Preparation not only includes getting your boat and equipment ready but one thing that could make a world a difference in becoming successful is to develop a game plan, so to speak, for every fishing trip you make. By this I mean, determine what you want to accomplish for each trip. Another way to put it is to have a "Goal" for each trip. An example would be, I want to learn more about a particular bait or I want to learn more about my electronics.
The important thing to remember about setting a "Goal" for each trip is to WRITE IT DOWN, much can be said about goal setting but remember unless you write it down it is only a thought or a dream.
Not only do I keep detailed records of my fishing trips, I also have a notebook that I write down what I want to accomplish for each trip. You can carry the notebook with you but I have found that carrying a micro cassette makes it much easier to keep track of the day on the water.
Setting a goal and keeping track of the events of the day makes it easier to analyze the day on the water. Analyzing the day's events and comparing that with your game plan is a very critical part of becoming a successful bass fisherman.
It is this analysis is where you will begin to notice your strengths and weaknesses. Your goals on future trips should be centered on these weaknesses. That is why it is so important to be honest with yourself when doing a self analysis - so that you know what your weaknesses are. You will be amazed as the year progresses what these self-written reports of your performances will do for your fishing. In a way you are "Preparing to Succeed".
You can look at persistence as, "How much do I want to succeed?" It is this determination that will make you persist towards your goal of becoming a successful fisherman. Without this determination we are just going through the motions. We must have determination and the will to persist no matter how bad things may get out on the water.
When you create a goal or game plan for each trip it gives you the motivation to accomplish that goal. Even though there will be days when things don't go well, but we have to have the determination to persist to succeed. Even when we have bad days and you know we will, there can be very good information come from that bad day.
We as bass fishermen are always looking for information on how to catch bass and what to do in certain situations. Those bad days can be looked at as, "What not to do in certain situations."
So you see even good information can come from bad days which should give us the motivation to persist. You can actually learn more from the bad days than the good days. You will see that if you are determined to succeed and persist no matter if it is good or bad, you will see yourself improving.
Preparation, Persistence, Determination and Motivation are so very important to us succeeding as bass fishing but what it comes down to is a very simple formula:
Preparation + Persistence = Success
As you put this formula to use you will find yourself fishing with more and more "Confidence" on every trip. By "Preparing" a game plan and having the "Persistence" to accomplish that goal, you will be amazed at the results.Tournament Tips