The 2% Way

Dr. Myron Rolle’s secret to achieving his myriad accomplishments: being named a Rhodes Scholar to study at Oxford, playing in the NFL, and becoming a neurosurgeon, is taking things one step at a time.

He spent two seasons in the NFL, with the Tennessee Titans and the Pittsburgh Steelers, and is now a senior neurosurgery resident at Harvard Medical School. His next stop will be a residency at Massachusetts General before he pursues a one-year fellowship for pediatric neurosurgery.

Dr. Rolle details his journey in the recent book , The 2% Way: How a Philosophy of Small Improvements Took Me to Oxford, the NFL, and Neurosurgery.

Part memoir, part self-help guide, the book describes how his principles of hard work, spirituality, and family values brought him to rigorous academic programs, earned him scholarships, launched his career in the NFL, and brought him to the echelon of medicine. His philosophy is to aim for small, persistent, daily improvements rather than sudden or dramatic changes.

His guidelines include:

  • handling obstacles or defeat with grace
  • avoiding wallowing in self-pity
  • never resting on your laurels
  • aligning overall goals with a sense of meaning and purpose
  • understanding that others have faced similar challenges
  • edifying yourself daily
  • having a sense of humor

Dr. Rolle writes that he learned the 2% philosophy from his college football coach. However, throughout his life, he always pursued the extraordinary. Growing up in New Jersey, he was a star high school football player and was eventually offered over 80 scholarships before attending Florida State University, where he received the prestigious Rhodes scholarship. He then deferred his career in the NFL to obtain his masters, with honors, in medical anthropology at Oxford University. His life goal is to help children with congenital and other brain disorders, through his career as a neurosurgeon, his charitable work with children’s organizations, and his inspiring words.

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