It’s been a while since I have posted and that’s mostly due to the fact that the last month of my life has been a pretty busy one. Between getting and starting a new job, going on an adventure to Boston, the holidays, travelling home to the Island and all the fitnessing….there hasn’t been a whole lot of extra time to sit down and write. Oh, and did I mention that my new job is just writing all day everyday….that will either make me a much better writer or completely deplete me of creativity and passion.
I learned a SHIT ton about myself in 2015 and it was definitely the most reflective year of my life. As I approach the two year mark of my new found passion – Crossfit (April 2016), many of my goals this year are fitness related. Yep, almost 2 years in and still the worlds #1 worst squatter – but that changes this year. #squateveryday #500squatsaweek #squatmafia BUT, I also realize the importance of balance and trying to find a little bit more of that this year (If that’s possible while doing 500 squats a week).
I have read a few great books and listened to a few great podcasts recently, highlighting the habits of the worlds most successful. I have paraphrased a few of my favourite habits below. Whether you set goals for yourself or not—although, I highly recommend that you do, I hope that you can take even just one of these tips into the new year.
Choose Spartan Over Luxury –
The worlds most talented athletes, musicians, scholars and business people were not produced in luxurious gym spaces with pristine equipment or beautiful classrooms with the latest technology. Most olympic athletes come from extremely humble beginnings. The worlds most successful people will practice wherever they can and do whatever it takes despite the circumstances. If you won’t go lift a shitty rusted bar in your garage on a day that you can’t make it to the gym because it’s too cold or too ghetto….your desire for comfort outweighs your desire for success. “If given the choice between luxury and Spartan…choose Spartan, you won’t regret it.”
Shrink Your Space –
Smaller spaces deepen practice. The best European soccer teams used to practice in rooms slightly bigger than a bathroom to increase spacial awareness and vital ball control skills. No joke, I spent every day of my life dribbling a basketball on a 4’x3′ slab of concrete because it was the only hard surface in my yard and I truly believe this made me a better basketball player. If you snatch a bar two feet from your partner, you better believe you are going to learn how NOT to drop that bar on their head. Next time you practice think, what is least amount of space I need to get this done. #gameschamp
Steal From Others –
Ever notice that the youngest siblings are often the most talented, ie. Serena Williams, Michael Jackson, Ronda Rousey, Mozart. This is because they spend years copying their older siblings, mimicking their habits and learning form their mistakes. The worlds most talented don’t acquire skills naturally, they watch intently, they practice, they make adjustments and steal everything they can and make it their own. Watch intently those you want to be like, how do they move, what habits have they formed and pick pocket that shit all the way to the bank.
Turn off the clock –
Deep practice is not measured by time or volume but by the number of quality reps completed. Instead of saying, I’m going to snatch for 30 mins every day, say, I am going to do 30 quality reps a day. The clock isn’t always a bad thing but it can hinder attention to detail. Measure progress by reaches and reps…not always by volume.
Set A Daily SAP –
A SAP is the “smallest achievable perfection”. Pick one thing a day that you want to perfect and give it all your focus. Maybe today you are only focused on the second pull of your clean, keeping your feet together during pull-ups, or striking the ball perfectly with your laces on every kick of the soccer ball. Whatever you choose, the point is to take a small defined target and put all your effort towards hitting it.
Before Bed – Watch A Vid –
A useful habit performed by many of the worlds greatest includes watching a video of your idealized performance before bed. This is done by surgeons, athletes, actors and comedians and a lot of research supports the notion that this creates improved performance, mental toughness and confidence.
I watch this video legit 5x a day – just the most beautiful mover.
Stop When You’re Exhausted –
Elite performers tend to work themselves to utter exhaustion. This seems to be a cornerstone of Crossfit and something that brings people together. However, working hard and being exhausted are different and the science shows that exhaustion is the enemy. Fatigue slows the brain, triggers errors and lessons concentration. If you are exhausted and making mistakes you will cut corners and learn bad habits. If your exhausted, take a nap. (successful people nap).
Be Willing To Look Stupid –
Reaching, failing and reaching again is the only way our brain is able to make new connections. Feeling stupid is no fun but it’s 100% essential for growth. Wayne Gretzky is famous for falling down at practice all the time….that is because he was pushing the boundaries of what was possible. At Google, employees are given 20% of their time to work on creative non-approved projects that encourage risk taking. This year…take a few risks and be willing to look stupid.
“Think Like A Gardener, Work Like A Carpenter” –
“Think patiently, without judgement. Work steadily and strategically, knowing that each piece of your effort connects to a larger whole. Talent grows slowly, do not criticize yourself because you are in the growth stages. Instead, build it daily with deep practice.”
Happy new year.