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Mark Cuban: Business Is the Ultimate Sport Even professional athletes take time off and know they will retire.

By Ryan Robinson Edited by Dan Bova

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

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Mark Cuban

One of the reasons I'm such a big fan of Mark Cuban, is because he's not afraid to tell aspiring entrepreneurs exactly how hard it is, to become truly successful in business.

He doesn't sugarcoat the inevitable failures you'll experience along the way, and he doesn't wrap the endless hours of hard work in a warm fuzzy blanket for anyone.

In fact, Cuban goes as far as citing his number one, most important rule for startups, as never even getting started unless the business is an obsession for you. He's an adamant believer that in order to eventually become successful, you have to love what you're doing.

Even still, that intense drive will be put to the test time and time again as you're faced with inevtiable roadblocks and failures as you get closer to the goal.

In many ways, business can be compared to the hypercompetitive world of professional sports. The non-stop action, ever changing nature of the game, and ruthless battles for the title, certainly draw some close paralells for many entrepreneurs. As Cuban explains, "Business is the ultimate sport."

For Cuban, it's this simple: "Either you want to win, or you don't want to win - it's very competitive." There's much more on the psychology behind what it takes to become a successful entrepreneur in Cuban's hour-long interview over on 30 Days of Genius.

You don't just sit around, come up with an exciting idea, put up a website, and instantly start making millions. From my own personal experience and dozens of interviews with successful entrepreneurs, I know business just doesn't work like that.

Running a business takes work. Aside from the fact that you need a product or service that creates genuinely helpful solutions for your customers, you're going to need an intense drive to see your company through even the first few years of being in business.

There are going to be hundreds, thousands, or even millions of people who are going to be competing against you to build stronger customer relationships. What's more, is that's never going to change. In fact, it's only going to get more competitive over time.

"I've said this to our players over the years, a game is forty-eight minutes. You practice, even if it's five times a week, three hours a day, maybe you work on your game another hour or two a day, and you're all in if you do that," Cuban says.

He continues, "In business, it's 24 by 7 by 365 by forever, and you're competing with everybody. Business is the ultimate sport, there's nothing close."

I couldn't agree more with this point Cuban makes. If you want to become successful as an entrepreneur, especially if you're starting a business while keeping your day job, you need to be insanely motivated. You have to focus only on saying yes to the opportunities that'll maximize your chances of success, prioritize your efforts, and make daily progress toward your biggest wins.

Cuban talks about all of this, and much more in the full, hour-long interview over on 30 Days of Genius with CreativeLive.

Ryan Robinson

Entrepreneur and Online Educator

Ryan Robinson is an entrepreneur, content marketer and online educator who teaches people how to launch meaningful self-employed careers.

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