For those of you who are not into mixed martial arts (or MMA), John Kavanagh is one of the best MMA coaches in the world. He runs Straight Blast Gym Ireland and has been coaching the superstar Conor McGregor—one of the best MMA fighters in history—since the day he got into MMA and arrived in his gym.
John was also Ireland’s first MMA fighter and its first Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt. Plus, he’s a down-to-earth, humble guy. This is his inspiring story about his journey to the top and it reads like a case study in the growth mindset and grit.
I mean… The moment I saw the title I wanted to read it and create a Note on it just so we could talk about the title itself! :)
“Win or Learn”? <- That’s literally THE PERFECT mantra for the growth mindset. (Seriously.)
Win. Or learn. There’s no such thing as “losing” when your ultimate goal is growth. (More on that in the first Idea.)
I’ve always loved sports books (check out our ) as sports provide such a great, focused context for excellence in action. I got into MMA a bit more after another one of the leading MMA coaches (Firas Zahabi) became an Optimizer and sent us a nice note letting us know how much he loves PhilosophersNotes. (Thanks, Firas!)
And, as I read this book, I was reminded of another recent Note on a book by one of the world’s best CrossFit coaches: Ben Bergeron—his is awesome. Plus we recently covered the great mental toughness coach Bob Rotella’s book .
The book is packed with inspiring stories and Big Ideas. I’m excited to share some of my favorites we can apply to our lives TODAY so let’s jump straight in!