Muhammad Ali didn’t have sex much.

He lost his virginity to a prostitute aged 16 and he was married four times. But outside of these relationships and around fights, he didn’t have sex much. And as the Olympic and World Heavyweight boxing champion, it wasn’t because he didn’t have options.

“His Louisvillle sponsors had him staying in a hotel on Second Avenue, a hotel loaded with pimps, hustlers and prostitutes going after him every day. They’d come up to him asking, ‘What do you want kid? You want a broad or a sissy? Let me get you somebody. Whatever you need, we got.’ And he’d turn ‘em down stone cold, not even a bit of interest… in those days he had only one thing in mind-winning The Championship.”Ferdie Pacheco (Ali’s Physician and Cornerman)

Ali had options. He just opted not to indulge them because he knew he wanted to be the Greatest boxer of all time.

“What I wanted in life was to be a spectacular, winning performer. And if turning my back on sex was what it took, I would be like a nun.”Muhammad Ali

muhammad ali boxing

We all have a hunger; a desire within us, and it’s often the case that if you’re ambitious, you also have a high sex drive. There is a part of you that craves growth, satisfaction and experiences, which can be momentarily calmed by a steamy session, or distracted by the process of finding one. But if you really are goal oriented, then there may be a better use for this energy.

“There never has been, and never will be a great leader, builder, or artist lacking in this driving force of sex.” — Napolean Hill

It’s going to take a lot of alone time and hard work to get to where you’re going and this requires focus and drive. Where do you find that energy? If you can harness your internal fire, then you might be able to use it as a driver, rather than letting it lead you elsewhere.

This definitely does not mean abstaining from sex. Sex can be a great source of pleasure and therefore an important part of that successful life you’re building, but recognise you have a desire within you that can be channeled into different things. When directed at your longer goals, rather than perhaps the immediate, this can be a powerful force. Handling the hunger with consideration can pay dividends. No project will make it off the ground without passion and you have that.

Some of the most successful people have a highly sexed presence. Think Angelina Jolie, Mae West, even Jeff Bezos. It’s part of the reason we love Ted Talks so much; all that presence and sex energy, delivering smart ideas. An aura of this energy will make you magnetic to other ambitious people; cultivate it and channel some of it into your work.

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“You find most prizefighters have enormous sex drives. I’ve seen the time when you had to feed some of them saltpeter to keep them cooled off. They build up this tremendous store of vitality and drive” – Harry Wiley