sent by Nick Grantham | 5th November 2021
High-performance sport is complex, and to operate effectively, you must recognise that complexity needs structure; you can't just go on gut instinct and intuition. Establishing systems and frameworks enhances your reasoning. Discipline allows freedom, and protocols can give way to art.
We can't influence someone else's behaviour if we try to impose our thoughts on them or explain why we think something is a good idea. In Chris Voss' excellent book, Never Split The Difference, he explains that everyone we meet has two basic urges that drive them: safety and control. If we stand any chance of influencing behaviour, we have to figure out how to satisfy these two primal drivers in every conversation, negotiation and coaching session.
When I read this passage in Ego Is the Enemy, it was as if someone had been watching what went on between myself and Alwyn Cosgrove (my Taekwon-do training partner and teammate) back in the mid-nineties. Alwyn would phone my house right around the time he knew I should be out training. If I picked up the phone, he would say, â€œI've just seen Matthew Boyle (at the time my nemesis!) out training; he's looking sharp, I think he will be in great shape for the British Championships next month!â€ He would then hang up! I would put the phone down, get my kit and go training! Whatever it is that you want to get good at, remember, there's a bunch of other people who are also trying to get good at it, and they will be pushing for the same goal as you. So make sure you put the time and effort in to secure the win.
I've mentored aspiring performance practitioners formally and informally over the past twenty years, and I've coached thousands of athletes. I've come to appreciate that mentoring and coaching allow me to be the 'master' and 'apprentice'. Each time I sit down to share my knowledge and experience with someone new, there will inevitably be learning opportunities coming back in the opposite direction. So take the time to share what you've learnt with others, and you'll receive more information back than you could have imagined.
Source: Never Eat Alone by Keith Ferrazzi with Tahl Raz
Thanks for reading. You can get more insights from my popular email newsletter. Each week I share performance insights in my exclusive For the Win newsletter. Sign up with your email now and join us.Join Now