One of the most crippling factors I see in my work as a coach is individuals who believe that having heavy artillery of qualifications and contacts is all they need to become successful. Believing that their philosophy, their referencing ability and know all attitude will create the illusion of achievement. They are wrong.
No amount of your philosophy is going to avoid the uncomfortable, the inconvenient, the confronting.
I recently was privileged enough to see Coach of Conor McGregor – John Kavanagh at his Win or Learn night. John’s character, humility and skill level is nothing short of world class. It is no surprise that he has produced the World’s best fighters.
Some of the points John made really stuck out to me. I have echoed these points to numerous colleagues and friends. Today I will share them with you.
Lesson 1 – Accountability
John spoke of his training center in Ireland. Many young men would walk in claiming they are the next Conor McGregor. However, the point these young hopefuls would become unstuck is in their inability to match the work ethic and commitment Conor possesses. John would explain, “You have only put in 4 hours of work this week… Conor puts in 5 x that. How are you supposed to be the next Champion if you do not put in the work?” Why is it that people believe they will be great influences and leaders when they don’t put the work in? They don’t sacrifice. They avoid the confronting and inconvenient. They may have the right INTENTION but they lack the COURAGE to step up. They do not have the commitment to stand in times of challenge.
Lesson 2 – Challenge the Norm
Many aspiring athletes and professionals will do exactly as they are told. They will follow steps and instructions like robots. John spoke of how the best athletes would always need to understand the why behind the instructions and would always look from other perspectives. Many of these athletes (including Conor) would often challenge John and some of his thoughts on escapes and transitions, quite often these challenges would lead to more effective results.
Lesson 3 –Focus on flow
Coming from a boxing background this one surprised me the most. John is a strong believer in focusing on working with flow and light contact. His fighters would have a maximum of only 8 full contact sparring sessions leading into a fight. That is one per week for the last 8 weeks. Many fight gyms are brutal. This can result in many people being injured during training and ego getting in the way of progress. At the age of 40 years, John is personally very selective as to whom he will roll with and the intensity he puts in. There are only so many slams your body can take. Be smart.
Mindset & Performance Coach