#703 How Bad Do You Want It?

Mind Over Obstacles

Matt Fitzgerald wrote a great book called How Bad Do You Want It?

It’s a great addition to the sports-as-a-portal-into-enlightenment-mental-toughness series that investigates WHY we stop before we’ve given our absolute best athletic performance. (Of course, as always, the same general wisdom applies at LEAST as much to life as to sports…)

Basic idea: Back in the day, scientists thought athletes stopped when they were simply too fatigued.

Then they did some tests and realized that an athlete’s muscles ALWAYS had some more juice in them to exert more effort and that fatigue wasn’t the reason they stopped.

The new theory was that there was a “central governor” in the brain that basically made sure the athlete never went beyond a place that could be dangerous.

But that theory has been pushed aside for something called the “psychobiological model” of sports performance which basically asks, “How bad do you want it?” 🤓

The sub-title of the book captures the essence of this approach pretty well: “Mastering the Psychology of Mind Over Muscle.”

The short story on HOW to master the psychology of mind over muscle (not just in sports but in all of life)?

We need to get really good at managing what researchers call “perception of effort.”

We basically give up when the perceived effort is more than we’re willing or able to handle.

The short story on how to Optimize our relationship with our perception of effort so we don’t give up before we reach our potential?

We need to get really good at cultivating what researchers call “coping strategies.” That’s what the book is all about.

And, guess what?

That’s pretty much what ALL of these +1s are about.

Tiny little things we can do to not only “cope” with the inevitable challenges of life but to use those challenges as FUEL for our growth.

When you face challenges and smile and say “#OMMS!!!” to yourself? That’s a coping strategy.

So is “Bring it on!” and “I’m excited!” and nibbling on Hero Bars and fill-in-the-blank-with-your-favorite tools!

Actually, let’s make that Today’s +1.

What are three of YOUR favorite tools? The stuff you have found MOST impactful for you as you strive to Optimize and actualize?

1. _____________________________
2. _____________________________
3. _____________________________


High fives and here’s to mastering our minds to overcome our perceived limitations!

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