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Tips Uncategorized

Top 7 tips to improve sports performance

Being an athlete requires some level of dedication but dedication doesn’t necessarily equate to improving.

I see many athletes, going through the motions and ‘competing’ yet they don’t improve and I always ask the question why do they play, and over the years there’s some commonalities I’ve learned that stop a person from improving.

Here are my top 7 tips to improving your sports performance

  1. Have a need or desire to improve – I’ve learned some athletes are content being where they are and their current performance level and that’s fine. Each to their own so to speak but these people don’t have a need or desire to improve. They have a desire or need to stay the same and until that desire or need to improve, becomes greater than the desire or need to improve, good luck to them!
  2. Have an open mind to learning new concepts and perspectives – If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got, said Henry Ford, the automotive tycoon. When you go through the same training routines at the same level of effort, having the same attitude towards training and playing, you will always get the same outcomes. Improving involves pushing yourself to come out of your comfort boundaries which means learning how to think and act differently.
  3. Take action – It’s one thing to learn new concepts and strategy and a whole new ball game when you actually take action. I see some athletes learning new strategy then when the moment comes, they fail to take action. There are a few reasons why this happens
  4. Perspective; don’t fear the change, embrace the opportunity – When you learn a new concept or perspective, one reason that stops a person from taking action is fear. Some people don’t like change because it takes them away from what they know and what’s comfortable, yet no-one ever improved by staying comfortable in their own bubble. Change should be seen as an opportunity and with this opportunity comes excitement
  5. Know the power of self-talk – As we just realised, the perspective of approaching a new situation can elicit fear or excitement which ties in with the power of self-talk. What you say begins a series of thought processes and your synapses begin to fire which release emotions. When you talk about fear and negativity, your body and mind will begin to act in a way to protect itself, to keep it safe, but when you talk about opportunity and excitement, your mind and body will begin to act in a way that helps you grow and improve. But beware, if improving your self-talk is new to you, your old thinking habits may try to hijack you and drag you backwards. Stay strong and practice positive self-talk
  6. Know your coach probably doesn’t have the solutions to your need to improve – This harsh reality is common for many competitors and although there are some coaches that understand what it takes to improve, many are too focused on strategy, techniques and plays, leaving players frustrated. As a player you have a right to understand what the coach wants from you and it’s reasonable to ask your coach questions. Some coaches believe they are the be all and end all of communication, placing themselves onto a pedestal, creating an environment where the coach tells the player what to do and the player complies with their instructions. This style of coaching is becoming obsolete as a new breed of coach understands the value of listening to players and understanding their perspective. The question you can ask any coach to help you improve is “what can I do to help the team?” The answer will prompt a new thought from the coach and the answer he gives you will give you clarity on your next moves
  7. Don’t follow the crowd for the sake of it – To improve means doing things differently and if that means doing things that the crowd don’t do, then go and do it. As a younger basketball player I took on many of the tips I’m sharing with you now and at only 5′ 7″ in a game full of much taller, stronger players, I had to do things differently but it was this different approach that led me to be voted the MVP of the England U19 basketball team at a tournament in Etten Leur, Holland. Learn to be bold and set your own standards

BONUS

As you learn and grow, you will make mistakes but know a mistake is just an act that didn’t give you the expected outcome at that moment in time. Go again and make the necessary adjustments.

Are you ready to improve but want some support?

Here at Elite Sports Minds 23 we have created the NEAT System – a proven system that gets results. To find out more click here

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Become who you want to be How Can You Help Me?

Four Steps To Improved Sports Performance In 45 Minutes

The Barriers

Photo by Travis Saylor on Pexels.com

Creating change and improving isn’t easy.


If it was, everyone would be playing at a much higher level, everyone would be thriving in life and leaders would be inspiring their teams and productivity would be high. But not everyone makes change easily.  People create barriers, excuses and reasons, limiting the ability to change.


The first question that springs to mind is ‘why’ and it’s the answers that tell the story. But before we get into that we need to dig a little deeper.

 
Before we ask the obvious question ‘why’, we must delve into your psyche and find out if you have a desire or need to change because without that desire, change won’t happen. 


The mere thought of change can instil a sense of fear and uncertainty.  The fear of the unknown is greater than the desire to change and until the desire to change becomes greater than the fear of the unknown, you’re going to continue with your life as it is.


So the question becomes

“How do I overcome that fear?”

Beliefs And Values

 
Throughout your life, you’ve experienced many things and through these experiences you’ve created beliefs and values and it’s these beliefs and values you hold today.

 
For example how you treat others, how you train, what you eat but most importantly how you make decisions.

 
There are some people that know how to create change quickly and get what they want. They just know what it takes and they thrive.  Perhaps you can think of one of those people now?

 
These people have something in common and it’s this I want to teach you, so you can create that change you desire.

 
Remember earlier when we asked why everyone isn’t creating change to improve.


Those beliefs and values you created are holding them back.  When a belief or value holds you back we have a name for them. These are called limiting or mistaken beliefs.

Your Comfort Zone

Photo by Helena Lopes on Pexels.com

 
Creating change also involves being uncomfortable.  You are where you are because your values and beliefs give you comfort. They form part of who you are and being you is comforting. To get different results you have to learn to be “comfortable being uncomfortable“, to step out of your comfort zone so to speak.

 
Many people perceive coming out of their comfort zone as this huge, scary monster, where emotions will run wild and the world come crashing down leaving a huge chasm of emptiness and pain.

 
In reality, coming out of your comfort zone is simply thinking differently, experiencing different emotions and acting differently and only lasts a few moments. 

Would you be willing to experience a few moments of discomfort to remove yourself from the discomfort you’ve been experiencing for some time?

The Pro Basketball Player’s Story

Photo courtesy of BBL

 
I remember a professional basketball player writing in his weekly column in a newspaper and in this particular column he wrote about his frustrations in his form. He was known as a scorer and had played for England but he couldn’t get out of his slump and was averaging about 5 points a game.  He was stuck and didn’t know what to do.

 
We connected and spoke for about 45 minutes and all the time we spoke I was listening to his words, asking specific questions with the aim to discover what his limiting or mistaken belief was that was holding him back. 

We uncovered the problem and once we did that we began to reframe his thoughts to create a new belief.

 
On a side note, the relationship between player and coach should be one of respect and trust and mutual understanding because to win and be successful, you need respect, trust and mutual understanding.

 
Although these three ingredients existed, a simple miscommunication created a mistaken belief and from this belief the player began to behave in a way that supported this belief because he respected, trusted and understood what his coach wanted.

 
This coach wasn’t trained to explore the ‘why’ and in general many coach programs don’t have these strategies in place which, in my opinion isn’t right. As a coach in any sport, and one of your players is struggling, surely you’d want to know why and how to help, so they can begin to perform well and the team will get more wins? Or is it easier and quicker to bring in an expert?

If there are any coach educators reading this, I’d be happy to discuss ways to integrate these concepts into your program.


We broke down his mistaken belief and reframe his thoughts, creating a new belief, leading him to explode for 20 points, hitting 100% from the field. He kindly wrote in his column and I invite you to read for yourself here the impact it had on his game and to this day, working and helping an England player remove his mistaken belief allowing him to play like he knew he could play, is one of my proudest moments.

The Four Steps To Take

Photo by Lukas Hartmann on Pexels.com


He was able to overcome his fear through understanding and accepting 3 principles. 

  1. He had a desire to change
  2. He had an open mind to learning new concepts and perspectives
  3. He was willing to put them into action


He was willing to be uncomfortable for a few moments and create different emotions that allowed him to create change in his performance


He was able to think, feel and act differently.

“It’s the thought of change that will drive you forward or hold you back. Taking action is the simple part”

 
You can remove the fear of change by giving yourself permission to learn and accept these three principles and be uncomfortable for just a few moments.

let’s recap and list the 4 steps you need to take to create change

  1. Have a need or desire to change (Use the exercise below)
  2. Have an open mind to learning new concepts and perspectives
  3. Accept you’ll come out of your comfort zone but understand that discomfort only lasts a few moments compared with the length of time you’ve been experiencing discomfort or frustration
  4. Put these new concepts and principles into action


Have you had enough of your current situation and want change?

If you feel there’s still doubts but you realise you’re ready to make change, and would like to find out if what I offer can help, get in touch and let’s make things happen.


Do you know someone that’s struggling? Please share this as it could help. 

Live with purpose


Mike

To find out more visit my website here

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Become who you want to be My Journey Tips

The Journey Part 20 – Why are you competing?

“Life is a competition not with others, but with ourselves. We should seek each day to live stronger, better, truer lives; each day to master some weakness of yesterday; each day to repair a mistake; each day to surpass ourselves.”

David B. Haight
Photo by Janko Ferlic on Pexels.com

Knowledge Is Power

They say knowledge is power and they would be right because without knowledge, how do you compare, contrast and reflect on your journey and I’d like to be frank with you.

If you’re not winning, if you’re not number one, then why are you competing?

It’s not a trick question but a question that puts the power in your hands because when you fully understand why you’re competing as a professional athlete, you can really focus on achieving your goals and let go of some unrealistic expectations others may be putting on you.

Not every professional athlete will make it to number one in the world because to reach the pinnacle takes a dedication that requires sacrifice, some luck, some thinking outside the box, the physical and technical prowess and a mindset so determined, nothing gets in the way.

Photo by Miguel Á. Padriñán on Pexels.com

You’re Not Number One!

So let’s assume you aren’t striving to be number one but you are striving for something else; something that drives you enough to continue to invest your time and effort into making a career out of being a professional athlete.

So let’s explore what this question means to you

WHY AM I COMPETING IF NOT TO BE NUMBER ONE?

Motivation comes in different shapes and sizes and I want you to focus on you. Your needs, your desires without comparing yourself to anyone else.

This is your journey, this is your life and this is your choice. It’s perfectly OK not to strive to be number one, but I feel there is an unwritten rule that if you’re an athlete you have to say you are striving to be number one because anything else can be seemed a failure and this expectation can weigh heavily on the shoulders of many, so let’s attempt to remove that burden now.

It’s OK not to want to strive to be number one, but it is ok to be the best you can be.

Let’s look at a few reasons for you to compete:-

Photo by Retha Ferguson on Pexels.com

Why Do You Compete?

  • You can’t think of anything worse than having an office job
  • You’ve spent all your youth playing and competing and that’s all you know
  • You want to be earning a lot of money
  • You want the fame
  • You want the big house
  • You want to be able to provide financial stability for you and your family
  • You have a bigger vision of what your role as an athlete can provide to the wider audience and those less fortunate than you
  • You want to prove someone wrong
  • You want to prove someone right
  • You want to be famous
  • When you compete you feel alive and able to express yourself
  • You fell into becoming a professional athlete and liked it…

As you can see there are many reasons for you to compete and this list isn’t a comprehensive list by any means but it gives you an idea of why you compete and for what purpose.

Photo by Victor Freitas on Pexels.com

The Power Of Knowing Why You Compete

Now you have an idea of why you compete, you can begin to focus your time and dedication towards that goal with gusto and passion really driving your performance forward with purpose and dedication.

That powerful understanding frees you from the expectations others place on you, the media, the fans, some who say they have your best interest at heart and perhaps now is the perfect time to let others know why you are competing, so they and you are on the same page and both are striving towards the same thing.

For example, an agent may want you to go for the deal that pays the most money, yet you may have another opportunity in mind where you can feel settled and respected as a player that may not be the deal that pays the most money. By having a conversation about what drives you forward, you will find a deal that’s right for you.

Being in control of your destiny, to some degree, can be great for your mental health and life off the field of play and knowing why you compete creates a solid foundation on which you can build something unique and special for you.

Why I Compete

In my quest to be the most sought after mental performance coach, I’ve had to make some sacrifices and bold moves and come to some realisations about marketing and promotions that I’m working on and come to realise that becoming the most sought after coach, is a personal achievement to me, without comparing myself to other coaches out there.

There are three things I strive to achieve:-

  1. Do what I enjoy doing
  2. Be financially, spiritually, mentally and emotionally rewarded for what I enjoy doing
  3. Give back

I work best in one to one situations because I really get to connect with my clients and understand their perspectives, how they perceive reality and understand the shifts in mindset needed to help them get to where they want to be.

My clients benefit from one to one as it gives them a sense of comfort and acknowledgement that they are at the centre of everything we do and that in itself, frees up the mind in such powerful ways that the new knowledge they are introduced to can be absorbed quickly.

This new knowledge is the power they are seeking.


Are you a professional athlete wanting things to change?

If you are, I’m inviting you to visit my website here and see if what I offer is for you.

Live With Purpose

Mike

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How Can You Help Me? My Journey

The Journey Part 19 – Growth and Change for you and I

“To uncover your true potential you must first find your own limits and then you have to have the courage to blow past them.”

Picabo Street

Without growth and change we become stagnant

The interest I have to help others grows, as do my skills when I listen to others and yesterday I received some great news that has made me want to up my game.

Yesterday I was approached by the director of an online community of around 40,000 people from all over the world with an interest in personal growth, professional development and mental wellness asking if they could use my blog to publish within an article and promote on their new website!

This could lead to more blogs being posted to a wider audience.

Sharing my insights, experience and tips to help others is something I enjoy doing, knowing if you can take just one golden nugget from my words, then they have been worth writing and so I agreed.

This new information led me to research how to improve my blogging skills because now, the game has changed and I want to learn and grow from the best and so I discovered a guy called Jeff Goins who really knows his blogs and from hereon-in, I’ll be making small steps in different directions to grow as a blog writer.

I listened to a podcast he was a guest on which can be found here, to help me understand how blogging can help others and generate money, and learned the following golden nuggets:-

Nuggets from Jeff Goins

  • Writing a blog is, in itself a practice and is every growing
  • Writing blogs can lead to Ebooks, webinars, training and tools to share with your audience
  • Run your own race! Be specific in which race you’re running and use a combination of tools, strategy and principles. The tools and strategy may change but the principles set the foundation
  • One of those principles is give before you ask (Heard from Gary Vaynerchuk). Give, Give, Give, ask.
  • Be generous with your audience
  • Make it about them and sometimes, someone may make it about you
  • You can give away your success without asking for anything in return
  • Spread your goodwill
  • Listen to what the people who have done this, have to say and learn
  • Lead magnet rewarding someone for their attention. Start listening!
  • Become a student – Be willing without arguing.
  • The oldest things that have worked for a long time are the strategies that will continue to work.
  • Connect with influential people.
  • Can I write a guest post for you? Can I share this tip with your audience?
  • Case study strategy – Be humble enough to say I don’t know and can I be a case study for your suggestions and insights? People who share advice rarely hear from those who are applying the tips. So when you become the case study of the giants that come before you, you can find yourself in front of the audience.
  • Masterminds – running masterminds growing together. Live events and conferences. Workshops.
  • Do a step by step process for your audience
  • Why Blog? To Spread an idea and to market a product or service I have to sell

What Does This New Direction Mean For You?

Firstly who are you? Are you my ideal audience or are you just a curious window shopper?

There are two audiences I wish to share my knowledge with:-

  1. Professional athletes wanting to overcome a tough time and move on from anxiety to improve quickly
  2. Team Owners/Directors wanting change to improve the results

Taking one of the nuggets above, there are some principles, tools and strategies I would like to share with you and if they resonate with you, then I know we can help each other

Principles Of Values

  • Accountability – Being accountable means taking ownership for successes and mistakes
  • Balance – Knowing what to put down, what to invite in and what to adjust
  • Calm – Letting go of anxiety, stress and bad feelings towards others and appreciating yourself and those you value around you

Principles Of Growth

  • Have a valid reason to want things to improve or change
  • Have an open mind to learning new concepts and perspectives
  • Have an ability to put these new concepts and perspectives into action

Tools for you

There are four areas in which I have experience and expertise I need to share with those wanting to improve…(Click the link to find out more of each tool)

  • 1-2-1 mental performance coaching for the professional athlete. When an athlete is struggling or wanting to remove stress and anxiety, I am trained in helping an athlete connect with their reality, create a vision and use psychological techniques to help them move forward quickly
  • Consultations for teams/clubs. As a director of a national league basketball team that attracted top talent and won promotion in the first year, there are strategies I want to share with the aspiring team or club wanting to win and help them implement them should they need support
  • Blogs. Writing blogs is a great way to share my expertise for free to anyone who has a desire to learn and grow in sports and also to find out a little bit about what drives me. I can categories them so it’s easier for the reader to find a topic.
  • Resources. These free resources give you some strategies to use immediately to help you understand what you can do right now for change and improvements. Why wait! These will grow and change as I learn more from learning from clients and as they learn from me.

Strategy

This I need to work on!

I have the principles in place, I have the tools and now I need a strategy to get me results.

What results am I after?

Sharing as much as I can to those people I feel can benefit and when they are ready, they will let me know and I can support them on a more personal level.

Jeff has a few tricks up his sleeve to generate income that include an Ebook, Masterminds, Workshops, Live events, webinars and training to help the audience through investing their money and it’s some of these strategies I need to learn and begin to roll out.

Perhaps if you’re a former or current professional athlete or a Director of a team/club and have a great audience perhaps I could write a blog for you around mindset and how to quickly change your perspective for improved results?

Yes, you guessed it, that’s a strategy I’m open to trying.

The NEAT System

One strategy I have up my sleeve is a system. A system that incorporates principles and allows me to connect with the right people. That system is called The NEAT System and if you’re still reading this, then you believe in the system.

The system is based on the principles you can’t help all the people all the time and even though I may identify people as needing my help, until their desire to want to improve, becomes greater than their desire to stay the same, the NEAT System or any other system won’t be of any interest to them.

So I need a way to save them time and save me time and therefore energy and allowing me to focus on those who really resonate with what I offer.

As my journey continues, I would like to extend an invitation to subscribe to my blog so you’re notified when I next post and also make suggestions on what you’d like me to write about that can help you as a professional athlete or team owner/director.

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My Journey

The Journey To Become The Most Sought After Sports Mental Performance Specialist Part 18 – What To Do When Shit Happens

“It’s not the shit we face that defines us, it’s how we deal with it.” 

Ahmed Mostafa

Reminding Myself Of The Pain

I started this journey more than a year ago after learning of the frustrations, bullshit and pain professional football players face and it didn’t sit right with me and began to build connections within football around the topic of mental health and how rife negative mental health is in football.

I’ve heard stories of players thinking about suicide, leaving the game and families breaking up and if football is the cause of these outcomes, then something else has to be done. It is something else that has to be done, that I’m driving forward so with that in mind, let’s learn what to do when shit happens, because shit happens a lot in professional football and you need to know how to deal with it.

When shit happens

When shit happens, there’s nothing you can do to change what happened. It happened and you can’t change it no matter how hard you try.

Mental health issues begin when a person tries to justify the event, push it under the carpet or blame someone or something else.

These are the worse things you can do!

What Should You Do When Shit Happens?

The very first thing you should do is accept it happened. Don’t retaliate, don’t make a harsh decision, just let it be for a while.

Don’t ask the question, ‘why?’ for the question Why invites thoughts and scenarios that will drive you crazy as you try to search for an answer that doesn’t exist.

Look Ahead

When shit happens you learn from it. You tell yourself it’s a learning curve and to ask yourself ‘what can I do now to move on from this?’ The answer to this question is, play the game and focus!

Let’s say you scored an own goal. In that moment, shit happened! But there’s still a game going on! You can’t stop playing so you put it to the side of your mind and carry on playing.

Some players allow that mistake to hang around in their minds, distracting them and toying with them and when a player is distracted even further, more mistakes can be made. Even when the game has finished, the player can revisit the mistake and play it over and over again in their mind but for what purpose? To feel guilt, to feel a loser, to change it?

They lose sleep, perhaps turn to the bottle in an attempt to numb the mind and even gamble in an attempt to distract themselves for while. These choices are never great!

Playing mistakes over in your mind doesn’t make sense, mentally or otherwise, meaning the most effective, purposeful act you can do after you make a mistake is to let it go.

This may seem like you’re avoiding responsibility but on the contrary, you’re taking responsibility for improving so the mistake is less likely to happen again, and you’re being responsible for your mental health.

Now I’ve covered what to do when shit happens, let me share what happened to me last night and it has nothing to do with shit happening.

Qatar Connection?!

Last night I was scrolling through LinkedIn and saw a post that Emile Heskey had written, something about feeling nervous when talking in front of ten people and being the person I am, I contributed my thoughts on how to overcome this issue and was pleasantly surprised to see a couple of comments telling me my post was great.

This led to a conversation and a connection and an invite to a podcast in the future!

I believe when someone takes an interest in my work, I have to explore the possibility of it leading somewhere and after a few exchanging of messages, this person had some value he could offer me and perhaps I can do the same for him.

We’re due to chat early next week but it led to me thinking, there are other ways I can help others, succeed, not just football players, for I understand the workings of the mind, and how to change your thinking for improved results in sports, but the principles work in business and life.

Perhaps there’s an opportunity for me to give back to his community in some way? Time will tell.

Roll on Sunday when it’s Father’s Day and I can have a couple of beers as a celebration!


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My Journey

The Journey To Become The Most Sought After Sports Mental Performance Specialist Part 17 – Defining My Philosophy

“If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them.”

Bruce Lee

The Way Of Jeet Kune Do

Jeet Kune Do was created by Bruce Lee, taking the most useful parts of other martial arts, removing the useless bits and adding some of his personality but he says he didn’t invent a new style, he create a new philosophy.

The practitioners of this martial art believe in minimal effort with maximum impact with extreme speed and eliminating wasteful movement.

In other words, removing the bullshit and using just the useful parts of other martial arts for quick results.

This method divided the people.

The purists were beside themselves. They believed no-one should take one martial art and mix it with another. It was unpure!

People with inquisitive and open minds to learning, embraced the philosophy.

Creating The NEAT Programme

I mould my philosophy based on the same principles of Jeet Kune Do.

The skills I’ve learned through training in NLP, Emotional Intelligence, CBT and Mindfulness all have value but I realised which parts I needed to use in specific situations, depending on my client’s strengths and weaknesses and put aside the useless ones in that moment.

I added my own flavour based on my experiences and personality and create the NEAT Programme.

How Can Professional Football Players Benefit From This Programme?

I understand the career of a football player is limited and I’m also aware that issues and problems can occur and impact on the mental health and performance of players who struggle to deal with certain situations.

A player is a person first and a player second and when the person is struggling off the pitch, the player struggles with performance on the pitch.

When a player is struggling, their career is in jeopardy, meaning their livelihood is on the line and when they lose that, their life can take a turn for the worse.

The NEAT Programme can help them overcome a problem quickly and learn how to eliminate wasteful movement (communication and behaviour) and instil useful communication and behaviours.

How Can You Access The Programme?

Before you consider applying, I need to know which side of the fence you sit on.

If you’re more a traditionalist then perhaps this isn’t for you.

If you have a closed mind to learning, then perhaps this isn’t for you

If you are rigid in your values and beliefs then perhaps this isn’t for you

If you like theories but rarely put them into action, perhaps this isn’t for you.

But if you want results fast with ongoing support and learn how to leverage communication and behaviours, then I invite you to apply.


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My Journey

The Journey To Become The Most Sought After Sports Mental Performance Specialist Part 16

“Thinking and taking action when you’ve learned new concepts and perceptions have two different outcomes. No-one knows what you’re thinking and will perceive you as the same, but everyone can see you take action and will perceive you as improved”

Mike Nichols

Marketing


Joining an Online Community

About four years ago I delved into marketing and learned terms such as funnels, up-sells, One-Time-Offer and Ideal Client amongst others and my mind for some reason didn’t like to really grab onto and believe these concepts and I know why.

When there is something new introduced into our lives, as marketing was with me at the time, I was eager to learn these concepts to help me transition from my day job to a life coach and as part of this process, I learned about marketing to help me attract the right kind of people.

I joined an online community called ClickFunnels which made their branding and services so attractive, I just bought in and paid a monthly fee to access their services, support and community. I got a couple of free t-shirts, a free domain name and really enjoyed learning the principles and concepts of marketing. There are people in the community going through the same journey and I connected with a lady in the USA who was great at designing logos and I used her talents to create one around my life coaching program called Move Me Forward.

On the weekends I’d go over to my parents house and record video content and write copy and put it all together in the online course software which made it so easy to put together. Great job ClickFunnels!

The Reality

I thought I was doing everything right. ClickFunnels has a step by step guide to help me from starting with my idea, to creating my ideal client, to getting it out there. I was following the steps and when I launched my online course, I expected to see clients come rolling in…

It never happened.

What was I doing wrong?

I have some ideas as to why it didn’t work but I’m not upset, angry or frustrated it didn’t work out because I learned so much and am putting some of the principles into my marketing today and I want to reflect and share what I learned about myself and how, if you want to improve your performance, you must have the right mindset

The Right Mindset

Firstly, you must have a purposeful and positive reason to change and improve. Back then my reason was born from the hatred from my day job. I hated it so much, I just wanted out.

But I’ve learned wanting change through hatred will only get you so far.

Secondly you have to have an open mind to learning new concepts and perceptions.

How we see the world is based on our past experiences, and from these experiences we create values and beliefs and we kind of fall into who we are and become comfortable with who we are.

When a new concept or perception is introduced to us, we can be defensive and ignore it without a real reason to change. Without a positive reason, you won’t be able to consider the possibility that a new concept or perception will be beneficial to you. You need a reason to change before you accept different concepts and perceptions.

The final principle is the ability to take action and it is here where many people fail and let themselves down.

They have a good reason for change, they have an open mind to learning new concepts and in their mind they are doing all the right things.

They think they are ready for change, but change doesn’t happen just by thinking differently. Change comes from acting and behaving differently.

Footballers don’t improve just by thinking. Yes they can learn new concepts and perceptions, but unless they take action on and off the football field, no-one will be see and appreciate the learning that took place.

Connections Are Key

I’ve learned some new perspectives about marketing and let me quickly list them

  • You can have the best product in the world but it it isn’t presented to the right people, it is the worse product in the world
  • You can have a shitty product but if the marketing is great, it will sell
  • Sometimes a person doesn’t realise they need a service until it’s too late
  • People often connect to a product or service based on how that product or service makes them feel
  • A person will only look for change when they have a need for change

What Does This Mean For Footballers?

I know there are football players out there that want change because they are pissed off and frustrated or simply want to improve.

They are tolerating the situation, some through fear of not wanting to say or do something wrong that could jeopardise their career and some filing used which lowers their self-esteem which impacts on their performance, which raises anxiety levels because they know they can be so much better than they are showing.

Perhaps they are hungry to be more famous and wealthy than they already are.

There are players out there that have a reason to change.

From a young age, players have experienced being in a bubble of learning and growing and this bubble limits their mental growth, concepts and perceptions. They form values and beliefs at a young age and once they make it to the big stage, these values and beliefs are no longer relevant because the person has grown and the situation has changed and it is this misalignment where problems can begin.

From wanting to change, a player needs to give themselves permission to have an open mind to learning new concepts and perceptions to move in a direction that benefits them.

I can tell you with 100% confidence there is at least one new concept only three football players have experienced that improved their ability and changed their values and beliefs for the better which improved their approach to football and life.

How do I know? I created the concept.

As I mentioned earlier, when you don’t take action, there will be no improvement in performance and I encourage any player that has a reason for change and has allowed themselves an open mind to learning, to TAKE ACTION.

What I’ve come to appreciate is some players don’t know what actions to take or what words to use to create change which is why my service supports them in creating these actions.

“I help players take action WITHOUT the fear of jeopardising their careers”

This Is Part Of My Marketing

Why do I blog?

You may have already realised but what you’re reading has purpose. The purpose is to show you there are ways to improve your performance as a football player but only when you’re ready for change so the question becomes who is ready for change?

Let me explain to give you an insight to help you decide if you are ready for change.

Let’s use this analogy. Imagine you have back pain. There are five stages to experience before you take action

  1. You are tolerating back pain. You aren’t seeking out a solution
  2. The pain is getting worse. You are considering finding a solution.
  3. You’ve heard of various ways to help back pain, surgery, massage, chiropractor etc and are considering your options
  4. After researching you decide a chiropractor is the best solution
  5. You find a chiropractor and start improving.

I don’t help with back pain but I do help players improve performance and remove frustrations quickly.

If as a football player and you’ve had enough of tolerating your situation and want things to improve, you must go through the next 4 stages to find your solution.

To start your journey click here now

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My Journey

The Journey To Become The Most Sought After Sports Mental Performance Specialist Part 15

“Coincidence may be described as the chance encounter of two unrelated causal chains which miraculously, it seems merge into a significant event.”

Arthur Koestler

Scratching The Wallpaper! Argh!


Call With Sam

It’s Thursday evening and I feel my time is becoming more limited as I continue to build contacts which is leaving me with things to do, which may impact on my ability to post every day in this blog, albeit two days behind reality. This will be posted on Sunday.

However I remind myself my quest is to become the most sought after mental performance specialist, so lack of time is a good thing!

I spoke with my mate Sam who’s now in Abu Dhabi, (Note – I wrote he lives in Dubai in my last post, apologies) well, he’s back in Wigan now, sent home during Covid-19 but hopes to get back out there and do his thing.

He told me in Cross-Fit there is a fine line between winning and losing and there are stresses and anxieties that exist at the elite level, and I’m sure at the amateur level as well but it’s these two components that exist in all sports and I recognised a need for having a neutral person to talk things through can make a world of difference, which is why I do what I do.

I used to be the best player in England and can argue I’ve been to the top and although I can’t compete as I used to, I can coach others to improve quickly and overcome stress and anxiety.

No matter what sport you play, the issues are all the same. Different sport, same issues and I often think about how it is, what it is.

Let’s me explain…

Is Your Belief Limiting Your Potential?

When you play at a high level, you’ve done a lot to get there and there’s an expectation put on you from others, but also from yourself to continue to compete at that level, if not improve.

You have formed beliefs around how to train and compete yet when you feel stuck, a sense of frustration can kick in, and if not dealt with, can lead to stress and anxiety as you continue to search for a solution, but non are forthcoming, so your mind sits in this place of frustration.

Imagine if you will, a glass door in front of you. You can see where you want to go but you don’t have the key to open the door. Others have given you keys but non fit. You tried making your own keys, but to no avail. You’ve put so much time and energy into finding the right key, you begin to create the illusion, getting through the door, just isn’t possible. You accept this is just as good as it gets and you see others, walking ahead of you.

The answer lies, not in finding the key to the door, but in finding a way round it.

But people are stubborn and set in their ways and will often tell themselves, it’s not possible rather than take a different perspective because the emotion formed from the belief they formed many years ago is stronger than the emotion needed to take a new perspective.

People like to hold onto beliefs formed years ago in very different circumstances, even when they serve no purpose in today’s situation.

Sam said he’d connect me with some of the top competitors in the sport which I’m really excited about to learn more.

Basketball Team Developments

I also had a great conversation with a person who can help me set up the basketball team as a CBS (Community Benefit Society). In the last year although we found success on the court, winning the league and gaining promotion from the fourth tier of british basketball to the third, I felt there were other ways we could engage our community and fans and also give back to others. I had no idea a CBS existed until I had a conversation at the right time with someone at Bury AFC who have established the same model.

I’m excited because this gives us an identity of one that matches our beliefs and values and can help drive us forward.

There is lots to do and explore but this new perspective has given me a new sense of hope and direction and a way to give back because there are three things I want to accomplish

  • Do what I love to do (help others)
  • Attract value in the form of money to do what I love to do
  • Give back

Two out of three isn’t bad..i Just need to tick off one more!

Another Iron In The Fire

I do have another iron in the fire so to speak with someone who has a passion for football and doing the right thing. Weirdly he knows some people in basketball that I played against or with. I’m finding more people in football, know people in basketball. Maybe There’s something in this connection???

If you like to read and learn about the business that is football, I strongly urge you to check out his website www.football4football.com

Over the last three days, I’ve been busy stripping walls, preparing them for painting and wallpapering, then painting and wallpapering them and after some incidents that involved scratching a piece of wallpaper I’d just stuck to the wall, and having to take it down, cutting a new piece, I’m done!

Time for some me time. I enjoy the peace and quiet of sitting and just being. No phone, no TV, just a few moments with my own thoughts.


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My Journey

The Journey To Become The Most Sought After Sports Mental Performance Specialist Part 14

“Coincidence may be described as the chance encounter of two unrelated causal chains which miraculously, it seems merge into a significant event.”

Arthur Koestler

Clients just two degrees away!


Have you heard of the term 6 degrees of separation?

For the unitiatated it is the idea that all living things and everything else in the world are six or fewer steps away from each other so that a chain of “a friend of a friend” statements can be made to connect any two people in a maximum of six steps.

About 25 years ago I was coaching basketball at a local school. I was coaching as part of a programme run by the my local council with the idea to help the players establish a basketball club that had a constitution, secretary etc in an attempt to higher the numbers of basketball numbers.

The guys were decent guys, a mix of white, Asian and black, which, if you know basketball is a sport that attracts people from all different backgrounds which in my opinion is a great way to break down social barriers and prejudices for a greater good.

Basketball for me opened my eyes to new cultures and society from the privileged to the under-privileged and these experiences have served me well in how I appreciate other people from different backgrounds.

One of the players, Sam had great skills but came across as lazy and a bit of a joker. We all pretty much stayed in touch on some level and Sam even made it to a pro team in the UK. I was happy for him.

As the years went by we all went our separate lives but we touched base every now and again.

Social media is great to see what others are up to by scrolling down your feed but it wasn’t Facebook that connected us today.

It’s Wednesday the 10th of June and I got an unexpected message from Sam

“Alright young Michael. Are you still running the basketball down at Bury?”

I figured he was around and wanted to come and play some b’ball and we started a conversation.

Covid-19 is still locking sports down although there has been some movement and you can have 6 people on the same court as long as it’s outside and the 2 meter rule is adhered to meaning, there is a limited amount of things you can do.

I gave him the news and suggested I let him know when things are back on.

The Cross-Fit Connection

I knew he dropped basketball to focus on Cross-Fit, a sport that has taken off in recent times and it turns out he’s now working in Dubai.

He asked me what I was up to which naturally led to me mentioning this blog and my working with athletes and he suggested if I wanted athletes to work with.

He said he knows lots of top people that can kick start my business.

After some more questioning, two of these people were the best in their country and another is a leading coach in the business!

We’ve not talked for years but we agreed to have a chat tomorrow and see what happens.

It’s funny how things can play out because I’ve been working a lot around learning marketing, funnels and strategy and was focused on creating adverts to attract clients, but a simple message from Sam and my intrigue led to something more relevant to my vision.

Today I’ve been at home, still on furlough, with my five year old who was helping me strip the front room of wallpaper, and paint three walls and you can imagine what it’s like to try to strip walls and paint with a five year old!

The message later on in the day, from Sam was light relief and much needed.

Let’s see what tomorrow brings!


Categories
My Journey

The Journey To Become The Most Sought After Sports Mental Performance Specialist Part 13

“Success without fulfillment is the ultimate failure.”

Tony Robbins

Is Material Wealth The Answer To Your Problems?


Did you find a reason to want to change from the last blog?

Having a reason to change drives you forward when things aren’t working but not everyone wants a reason to change. They would rather stay in the comfort of their own little bubble.

A Valuable Message

Last night I rediscovered a valuable message that I need to share with you.

This is relevant for people in sports, business and life so please share with people that might need a gentle nudge in the right direction.

Whatever your craft, whatever you excel at, you know you’ve spent hours, months and years honing that craft.

Your performance in that skill is unparallelleded and you’ve accomplished some great things.

This is what we call being skilled in Achievement. You took your time to learn a skill that has helped you get as far as you have.

You have become skilled in achieving something, be it sports, business or life. You may have achieved winning a league title, achieving a remarkable turnover of 5 million in a year or have achieved cool dad status!

Two Powerful Components

Success has two components

  1. Mastering The Skill Of Achievement
  2. Mastering The Art Of Fulfilment

Let me explain what this means to you

Your Achievements lead to external rewards – Money, houses, cars, fame just to name a few and in some way, having this material wealth can give you some satisfaction.

But this is short lived and can be taken away from you in an instant.

Just look how Covid-19 has changed the way people are living and earning a living. I know there are people out there suffering

The Misconception About Material Wealth

Many people with material wealth often have a sense of something being missing and they think they need more cars, a bigger house, more money to fill that gap and for a short period, the sense of something being missing goes away.

This only heightens their mistaken belief that having more material wealth solves their problems.

But the reality is that gap can only be filled with a sense of fulfilment but very few people know how to accomplish that.

Although they have Mastered The Craft Of Achieving, they have yet to Master The Art Of Fulfilment.

There is no blame to associate with this lack of knowledge because as much as we can assign importance to learning how to be fulfilled, schools, colleges and universities don’t deliver lessons on how to accomplish fulfilment, yet it is one of the most powerful arts and can be life changing in so many different ways.

I’ve researched and connected with former professional football players and talked about mental health and understand if only they had invested time, money and effort into mastering the art of fulfilment, many would have avoided the hardships they find themselves in now.

But a message to these players, it’s not too late! You can quickly discover a sense of fulfilment when you shift your focus away from you and onto others you care about. It’s easy to blame yourself, be critical to yourself and tell yourself what if, but this energy only drains your ability to feel fulfilled because you’re missing out on life as you focus internally on what you believe the problem to be. The problem is your perspective, not the situation. Shift your perspective and see what happens!

Being a professional football player has a shelf life and at some point, all that time and effort spent on mastering the skill of football suddenly becomes redundant as playing stops. You can no longer achieve on the field.

But being human lasts a lifetime so it makes sense to spend time on mastering the art of fulfilment because once playing football ends, you must find a way to fill that gap.

One of the most powerful ways to fill that gap is to give back. To take your skills and help others, either through charitable work for example.

If you’ve invested your money well during your time as a football player, you will have enough money to live on and perhaps you want to live a more fulfilling life by spending quality time with your family, building a business or perhaps becoming a wine connoisseur?

But you must start setting the foundation now. Don’t wait until the football ends!


Perhaps you want to chat about fulfilment and what you can do differently and I’m opining up my calendar. If you feel you would benefit from a chat, please book a time slot by clicking this link.