Doc Louis: The Wisdom of Punch-Out

Doc Louis and Little Mac, from the classic Nintendo game "Punch-Out!!"

Doc Louis and Little Mac, from the classic Nintendo game "Punch-Out!!"

"You're making progress, Mac. Every loss is a small win."

By Sam Yang - Get similar updates here

Little Mac had too much doubt and too little self-belief. But through the support of Doc Louis, Little Mac was able to overcome himself and fight his way to the top! The simple brilliance of early Nintendo games: this is boxing as metaphor for life.

Doc Louis, a Fictional Trainer With Real Life Gems

Every journey starts somewhere. Let’s make that first punch together!

On Timing

Simply throwing punches will only get you so far, Mac. You have to watch your opponent and find the right time to punch.

On Opportunity

Listen, Mac, dodge his punch then counter punch!

On Recklessness

Lead with your fists. Not with your face.

On Creativity and Action

Dance like a fly, bite like a mosquito!

On Flowing Like Water

Sometimes your opponent’s weakness is their attack.

On Self-Belief

Yes, you can Mac!

On Overcoming Setbacks

You see, a comeback is like a yo-yo. You gonna go down, but you’re coming right back up.

On Versatility

Left, right! Left, right! That’s it, baby!

On Innovation

Maybe you’re so predictable. He probably knows all your moves, son. Mix ‘em up. Mix ‘em up. C’mon now.

On Patience

Ok, Mac, be patient. Wait for that hook. He’s open just before he throws it.

On Confidence

If you’re gonna hang with the big dogs, you can’t be out there barking like a puppy.

On the Learning Mindset

You’re making progress, Mac. Every loss is a small win.

On Humility

Let’s give Glass Joe a little respect here. He can always take a whoopin’.

On Virtue

Keep it clean!

On Honor and Responsibility

Alright, Mac! Listen up! Great job, son, I’m proud of you. But I need you to understand, keep it in the ring. You don’t want to be a bully outside the ring.

On Practice Over Rewards

You’ll get the sweet taste of victory from training, Mac. Not from chocolate!

On Effort Still Being the Best Shortcut

Get ready to study hard, Mac; this is called old-school.

On Overcoming Yourself

Son, you gotta give 110% out there! I know mathematically it’s only possible to give 100%, but you gotta squeeze that extra ten percent out there for me, Mac!

On Resilience

You really sure? Three losses, and you called it quits?

On Grit

Go out fighting, baby. Never, never give up!

On Courage

It’s all about heart; I know you have it!

On Encouragement (Pushing Into Courage)

Don’t cry, Little Mac. Let’s give it another go, son.

On Self-Acceptance

Listen, son. You’ve had a great career. I’m proud of you, kid. You’re still the champion in my book.

On Knowing You Can Withstand All of Life's Trials and Tribulations

You can always take a whoopin’!

 On Knowing You've Done Enough

Good job, son. Good job.
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