Mental Matters Column: Kobe created the Mamba Mentality

One of the UK’s top motivational speakers and ex-MK Dons footballer Drewe Broughton talks about the effect Kobe Byrant had on many people…

Wisdom is earned, pain is its professor. Knowledge is learned, school and university are its master.

Kobe Bryant’s passing is tragic, because I feel he would have gone on to affect millions more lives than the ones he had already touched. His teachings, his wisdom inspired so many.

You only have to see the millions of views his videos on YouTube get. He was more than a basketball star. He had depth and character.

He had learned through suffering how to navigate life in the most pressured environment. How you can possess both drive and serenity. Wage war and still find peace.

I see many leaders and managers destroy themselves and their teams by wanting it too much, caring too much. Being “a winner.” They then blame their teams for being weak and not caring enough.

They can’t find compassion or empathy. That’s for “the weak” and they convince themselves that they are tough and it’s everyone else’s fault.

I hear it daily in my work. Leaders have buried their pain, their suffering. Become blocked from their humanity.

It’s a lack of acceptance that not everyone can be like them and care that much. If they can’t find that inner peace, they are promised a life of misery and depression.

Kobe had been on this great journey and learned acceptance. Acceptance of those who didn’t possess his drive. Of those who carried fear into their work and the debilitating affect it has.

He didn’t judge any more. Once asked why he’s called “difficult” at times, his answer was priceless and held a torch up to the inadequate leaders that we see so often.

Bryant replied: “I’m only difficult when they don’t match my morals and standards.”

There are millions of young and old who struggle with themselves. Millions who have dreams and crave inspiration. Managing their emotions and dealing with the hundreds of feelings, a life pursuing dreams, brings.

Kobe was a shining light. A man at the summit who was pulling people up. Sharing his great journey through the platforms we are so blessed to have such easy access to today.

That’s why Kobe’s passing is so sad. Anyone unfamiliar with his exceptional mindset just needs to watch any of his interviews on YouTube.

A great leader has gone.

For further information, visit or drop an email to Drewe at

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