Joel Green is a former professional basketball player & National Director of Nike Sports Camps. Joel had a challenging upbringing, growing up in an abandoned house in North Philadelphia. His cousin was murdered, he had a knife pulled on him, and he stood just 10 ft from another shooting. Years later, he tragically lost his older brother. In a profound moment in our conversation for The Mojo Sessions (link below) I asked Joel, if I could give him a quiet moment with his brother one on one, and he could ask him one question, what would he ask? Joel said "I would ask him if he was proud of me and what he was proud of." How often do we hear people say "I just want to make my parents or someone close to me proud." Perhaps we should be letting people know, those closest to us, that we are proud of them daily... so there is no doubt. The second part of Joel's answer is the profound moment. It's easy to tell somebody you are proud of them, but we must know what we are proud of them for. That takes observation, watching, listening, thinking, pondering, and appreciating with gratitude what it is that makes that person special, so when they say, "What are you proud of?" you are able to look them in the eye and tell them specifically. There's so much power in this simple act. Not just I am proud of you - we want to know what they are proud of us for. When I asked former Navy Seal, Andrew Paul what he believed were the most important things to say to a child he said "I love you and I'm proud of you". Enough said. GB
LINK to the conversation with Joel Green https://podcasts.apple.com/au/podcast/the-mojo-sessions/id1530154809?i=1000610062444
We all want to level up. We all want to be our best. To improve on yesterday and continue to progress in our growth. Over four seasons of hosting The Mojo Sessions, some definite themes have appeared... And one of the popular areas is certainly performance and mental toughness. This edition of The Espresso is based on performance. The Mojo Sessions Rewind is a collection of specific conversations that tieback to a particular topic, in this case performance - being your best, levelling up and moving yourself towards your goals.
One of the major benefits of podcasts is that they live in the cyber world and can be saved and replayed at any time. I thought that occasionally I would do a 'rewind' and share a list of past episodes of The Mojo Sessions on recurring themes and topics that have resonated not only with me, but also with other listeners of the show.
I hope you find this 'rewind' on the theme of Performance of value to yourself or someone you know.
The Mojo Sessions: Episode 306 - Mike McCastle
Unquestionably one of my favourite conversations ever was with Mike McCastle, Ep 306. When I said that all of us want to level up and improve...most don't...the few do. This was a conversation that sparked that narrative for me. That made me realise the most talk about it, read about it, listen, but do nothing about it...we want to be the few. The few that listen, take notes, curate our thinking, set a plan, execute, reflect, then do it again. Mike McCastle is an amazing example of how much potential lies within all of us, if we just go to that place to find it.
The path out of mediocrity. The few loyal to the standard.
Mike McCastle, inspired by Greek mythology of the 12 Labors of Hercules, undertook 5,804 pull-ups in a day to break the world record, pulled a 5,000 pound pick-up across the Mojave Desert in summer, climbed a rope to the equivalent height of Mount Everest, and recently broke the record for submersion in an ice bath...all for a greater purpose. Mike raises funds and awareness for causes such as cancer research, mental health for military veterans, and Parkinsons disease. Mike shows us the golden door way, the process we can take to be loyal to the standard. EP 306: Mike McCastle
The Mojo Sessions: Episode 401 - Justin Su'a
All of us go through times when we get knock sideways. All of us have times when we finish one season and start a new one. Finish one year, start a new one. Finish one job, start a new one. I was really curious about how the mental aspect would play into a reset and restart. Justin Su'a was such a nice guy, so easy to talk to, but I found his philosophies very valuable.
The Mental Reset for a High Performance Season Ahead
Justin Su'a is Head of Mental Performance for leading Major League Baseball team the Tampa Bay Rays. Justin works with players in the NFL, WWE, PGA, the U.S. Army, the IMG Academy, the Boston Red Sox and Google and hosts the super successful podcast "Increase Your Impact”. Working with the highest performers in the world of sport and business, Justin has a unique perspective on what it takes to operate at the highest level, recover after a loss, and reset for the new season ahead as a leader, a player, coach and as a team. EP 401: Justin Su'a
The Mojo Sessions: Episode 230 - Jay Morton
Jay Morton is not a guy that just talks about mental performance, he puts on his climbing gear and gets after it. After summiting Mount Everest a number of times, taking on plenty of mental and physical endurance events including racing cars, former Special Forces operator Jay Morton is just a normal guy. When he said, "I'm the most disciplined, lazy person you'll ever meet" he had me at hello. This is a great conversation with a guy who seemingly is pretty normal, but the mental strength he draws upon from within has him doing things that probably most of us could do ...we just don't get off the couch and do it.
The Special Forces on Mindset, Strategy and Excellence
Jay Morton spent 10 yrs in the SAS, 4 yrs in the Parachute Regiment, then summited Mt Everest twice. Jay is a guy who knows what it takes to become the best of the best. Whether serving as an elite soldier, training as a high-level shooter or becoming an expert in HALO (high-altitude low-opening) parachuting, Jay has always strived to be at the very top of the game... to find his greatness. Many of us are prone to underestimating ourselves but physical and mental endurance and resilience – as well as realising our own full potential – are well within our reach... if you have the desire to do the work. EP 230: Jay Morton
The Mojo Sessions: Episode 210 - Dr Jeff Spencer
He's not a coach, he's a corner man. He's been the corner man for multiple Tour de France winning teams, Le Tour arguably, the greatest endurance event, mentally and physically each year. He's worked with some of the biggest names in business. He is the guy that people go to to level up, cut through the chaff and achieve our ambitions. The thing that I took from the Champions Blueprint that Jeff developed is the first step in that wheel is legacy, having a mission, operating from a purpose. That's why his athletes and business leaders have such a sustained career, and don't flameout like most.
Meet the Cornerman That Titans Turn To
Dr Jeff Spencer is cornerman to some of our greatest achievers. A former Olympian, Jeff's client list boasts names such as Tiger Woods, U2, Nike, Richard Branson, as well as Tour de France winners, so it’s safe to say he knows a thing or two about becoming a world class performer! Jeff specialises in helping would-be high achievers who currently feel over committed, over extended and overwhelmed, find clarity on why they’re stuck, get un-stuck and go from ‘over it’ to ‘killing it’. EP210: Dr JEFF SPENCER
The Mojo Sessions: Episode 303 - Coach Dana Cavalea
The high-performers in any industry, are ritualised. It's about their habits. Their habits, rituals, routines are the things they deploy day in day out under any circumstances, in order to ensure that what is a priority, what's important, gets done. Rituals and routines also ensure you don't focus on the stuff that's not important. Coach Dana is a master at setting up the habitual approach to high-performance.
Embrace the True Habits of a Champion
Coach Dana Cavalea spent the majority of his career as the Director of Performance for the New York Yankees. In 2009 he led the team to a World Series Championship and was voted by his peers as the top Strength Coach in Major League Baseball. The author of "Habits of a Champion: Nobody Becomes A Champion By Accident", Dana writes about the mindset and habits we can use to elevate ourselves to Champion status. Having worked side by side with some of the greats of Major League Baseball, Dana is the go-to guy for performance habits. Ep 303: Coach Dana Cavalea
"Let's get our to-do list done, get our revenue in order knock over a few of these big projects and then we can worry about culture. Yes, I know culture is important but we need to get this stuff done first, then we can do culture." This sort of comment is becoming more and more prevalent. Leaders know that culture is important, well, at least they say they do, but they are happy to focus on projects, to dos, busy, and revenue, and push all that before their most important asset ... their people. So now the people are speaking!
These same leaders are the ones who complain they can't find good people, they can't keep good people, that people won't go the extra mile, that people won't take the initiative, that people aren't satisfied and so it goes. One EXECUTIVE even said "we don't need to do it for the moment. Unemployment is so low it can wait." Unemployment may be low, but so is quiet quitting. The term has been given to people who are turning up to work, going through the motions, feeling unfulfilled, doing work that they feel has no meaning, working in a company with no direction, and basically not knowing what's expected of them. All the ingredients that make up culture. These same people are also looking around.
The Most know it's important, it's only the Few that know it is the most important thing to do - prioritise it, set the plan in place, execute every day, demonstrate it through their leadership and play the LONG GAME...whilst at the same time, working on their strategy.
Photo credit Redd F