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10 Things I learned From Watching Slamdunk Anime That Can Be Applied to The Game of Life

Slam Dunk is a sports-themed manga series written by Takehiko Inoue about a basketball team from Shōhoku High School.

"It tells the story of Hanamichi Sakuragi, a teenager who falls in love with Haruko Akagi after being rejected by 50 other girls. However, as Haruko is in love with Kaede Rukawa, a popular and talented basketball player, Sakuragi decides to join the Shohoku High School basketball team to surpass Rukawa and make Haruko fall in love with him. As he starts learning how to play basketball, Sakuragi starts liking the sport and resolves to become the best player."


Here are some lessons I learned watching the series, that I think can be applied to life.

    1. If you have a strong why anything is possible

    “If your why is strong enough you will figure out how!” — Bill Walsh

    The main character joined the basketball club because he liked a lady who liked basketball. He fell in love with the game, and the rest is history.

    He endured the grueling of the seniors in the club without giving up.

    2. Shoshin - The beginner’s mind is powerful

    The main character was starting from scratch. He was curious to try different approaches to learn faster.

    He was free from the expert trap, knowledge cure, and confirmation bias. He scored using an entirely different way of shooting.

    3. Healthy competition is healthy

    Healthy competition drives team members to push harder and is a source of motivation for the team members.

    Sakuragi became one of the best players because of the fire to become better than his rival.

    4. It is about the team

    Think not about what the team can do for you but what you can do for the team. There is no point in scoring the most if the team loses the game. Everyone wins when the team wins.

    5. How you do anything is how you do everything

    ‘I have measured out my life with coffee spoons’ - T.S. Eliot

    Small things add up to big things over time. Michael Jordan used to go dressed up to the game. Excellence with his currency.

    Sakuragi, would not miss practice, and even if he misses the practice with the team, he made up for it at night or early morning the next day before classes.

    6. The only hack is to do the work

    Learning the fundamentals of the game helped Sakuragi learn faster.

    Sometimes the only way to go faster is to slow down and do the mundane before the exciting.

    7. Surround yourself with people you want to trade places with

    “Surround yourself with only people who are going to lift you higher.” - Oprah Winfrey

    Sakuragi started learning from the best and eventually became the best.

    8. Diversity is strength

    The team is composed of very diverse individuals, short, tall, and fast, but together they are powerful.

    9. Rules are made to know how to break them without really breaking them

    It is important to know the rule of the games you are playing.
    The ones who succeed are the ones who have the courage to bend the rules and make a dent.

    10. You can Skip the Line if you believe it

    Sakuragi has never played basketball before joining his high school’s basketball sports club. He skipped the line and became a starting member in record time.

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