This is a question, I think, that those who exude extreme levels of discipline, determination, passion and ambition often get asked; be it a successful businessman, sportsman, artist or bodybuilder. Is it success we are chasing? Is it pure passion? Is it the need to prove ourselves? Ego perhaps? I am writing this blog from a VERY personal perspective, so excuse me if I go all cheesy and deep on you. For me personally, there are so many factors, experiences, life happenings and even future dreams that drive me on a daily basis.

From having a not so easy childhood, moving schools and cities a dozen times, my mother having an aneurysm when I was at the tender age of 10, being bullied and teased constantly in school, to my mother and grandmother passing away in a house fire on the same day; all of these experiences, and many more, have played a huge role in me getting up every day and wanting more out of life, wanting to make a success and wanting to be the best I can be.

My biggest inspiration and motivation? FAMILY! It is something I have never really known. My family isn’t close at all, and there is nothing I want more out of life than my own little happy family. Seeing my brother and what he has made of his life from having nothing, is a MASSIVE motivation. He also is now a single father of the two most beautiful boys, and the first time I held his first-born son, Schuylar (who is now 8) was the first time I experienced what love is and means. I love kids and as above, I can’t wait to have my own when the time is right.

Then there are the naysayers, the haters or whatever they are called. These are the easiest to deal with, and to an extent, are also a source of motivation. To all the critics out there, you can talk and gossip all you want, it’s not going to stop me from striving to achieve.

To all the people that have always stood by me and believed in me; this post is my way of saying thank you. There are just too many names to mention otherwise I would, but my brother Leon, cousin Deon, my mom and grandmother are the most obvious ones.

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If it is possible, making right what I did wrong. I know this easier said than done. I have done a lot of things I am not proud of and hurt many people, but we are all human, we all make mistakes and all we can do is try to change our ways.

How badly do you want it?

A question a very good friend of mine, George Herwill, has asked me numerous times. My own goals and dreams drive me and by far outweigh any negativity and my life motto for 2016 is ‘’I might still lose a lot in my life, but I refuse to be outworked.”

Newly-made friends in the fitness industry and the drive and passion that they show, inspires me. We are blessed to live in an era in our country where we can be part of the BOOM of the bodybuilding and fitness industry, we can go down as legends and leave a legacy if we do things right and support each other all the way.

I am religious, a Christian and not afraid to say it. We are not all the same; we are all entitled to our own opinions and beliefs. For me personally, my faith has carried me, and will still carry me through tough times to come. Whatever your standpoint and beliefs, I firmly believe that God is in control.

Role models can definitely drive a person to succeed. We all started off idolising or looking up to someone. I have had many, but in the industry I find myself now, the likes of Jaco de Bruyn, Jeremy Buendia, AJ Ellison, Wittenburg Adolf, Gavin Perry, Earl Abrahams, Stian Lemmer, Louis Bessinger, George Herwill, Kai Greene, Phil Heath, Ulisses Jnr and many more motivate and inspire me immensely. And I too wish to be seen as a ‘role model’ one day.

If I can make a difference in one life, I will die a happy man; being able to change just one person’s life.  I have a tattoo on my inner right arm that I got after my mom and gran’s passing, that reads “One life, one chance”. I don’t want to die one day knowing that I didn’t use my only chance to impact people positively. The only thing we leave behind when we die is our legacy. This is ultimately determined by how we treat people, how we carry ourselves and our work ethic.

I hope you all find and see this as some sort of motivation to better yourselves daily, to make a positive impact in the lives of those around you and that you decide to live a life worth speaking about when you are no more.

I have chosen to share some really intimate pictures of my family and friends below. Please feel free to have a look through.

 

Yours in Fitness

 

Duan

 

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