ronda rousey with leo frincuDo you want to reach your best potential? Do you want to perform at your best?

If you answered YES to one or both of these questions, this article is for you.

Question number one:
Why do you think you should win your fight/match?

Question number two:
Since everyone works as hard as you do (or harder) and have pretty much the same skill level as yours (or higher), what is it that makes you special?

There are a lot of books and reading materials out there teaching athletes the secret of how to reach their best potential. I am going to cover one important psychological aspect of your performance: “personal management”.

What goes through your head right before and during your competition is an important key factor in your victory or your failure (loss).

This is how it works.

We all know what athletes do; they train and prepare in order to win their fights/matches against other opponents. If you’re an athlete, you know the drill of studying videos about your opponent in an attempt to basically predict (anticipate) his/her attacks and prepare/learn/practice your defense/offense.

This is all good if you want to set up a game plan/strategy for your upcoming fight/match; however, it needs to stop/change when it comes down to your performance. You see, it’s all about you.

Exercises are only tools designed to teach you something about yourself. Training is just a process to help you acknowledge and enhance your strengths.

From now on, you need to change your perspective on how you’re looking at your training camp and yourself. It is YOU who fights and who wins these competitions. So in case of a victory, you’ll be the one taking the credit, as it should be.

On the other hand, it is NOT your opponent’s great performance that defeats you… It’s your poor one. It’s the lack of personal management of your own resources that caused you to lose.

Guess why? Because your mind was focused on the wrong subject right before and during your performance. You were paying too much attention to what your opponent was doing vs. what you’re doing (or should be doing).

Why does everyone try to figure out somebody else when all they need to do is figure out themselves? The lion is fully aware of his hunting abilities way before he learns about his prey’s.

Remember, it is YOU who needs to attack, to defend, to apply techniques, to breathe, to rest, to push harder, and eventually manage the fight/match. It is YOU who wins or loses the match, not your opponent.

Since we have now established that, we can also agree that before and during any fight/match you need to start paying attention to ONLY one thing: yourself. Basically you need to tune everything and everyone out (including thinking about the person you are about to fight/compete against) and focus entirely on yourself.

This is the way it works: Immediately before your match, you need to start thinking about your breathing, even visualize your muscles and listen to what your confidence is saying to you. You need to acknowledge your strengths and remind yourself why you are there.

You have to remember what you’ve trained for and what is your goal: to give everything you have and to reach your highest potential.  If it helps, you can even look in the mirror to get a better idea of what I’m talking about.

Take a good look at yourself. What do you see?

Drive or fear? Confidence or doubt?

All your thoughts need to be directed inward. No more outside world. It’s about your inside world. It’s all bout YOU. If you haven’t done it by now, you need to get to know “that guy” (your self) extremely well.

You absolutely need to know how “that guy” breathes and moves. You need to know how “that guy” thinks and acts. You need to know what are “that guy’s” limits and how to reach them.

Remember, when you’re fighting someone close to your level (which will be most of your opponents); which means he trained as hard as you did (if not even harder), the one who knows himself better is the one who’s going to win.

The winner will be the one who is able to get the most out of himself/herself.  They’re the ones who will reach his/her highest potential, perform better, and make better decisions under stress. That guy will be the one who wins, and if I’m right, YOU want to be that guy.

How many times have you said (after watching yourself perform): “I had no clue I was doing this or that”, or “How did I end up in that position?” It’s due to your lack of self-awareness. You haven’t trained to improve yourself; you’ve trained to defeat someone else.

You haven’t trained to commit to an outstanding performance; you’ve trained to get over it. It wasn’t about you; it was all about them. For all of you who say, “I could’ve done better” or “I deserve better”… That was your best even if you think it wasn’t; and, you deserve what you’re getting even if you think you don’t.

Once you make it all about you, you’ll be able to gain more clarity about yourself and become more aware of your performance. You’ll be able to reach deeper and take advantage of everything you have. It’s a tool you need to practice every day until you’ve mastered it.

The more you practice, the more you will shape your identity. It will become yours.  That is having a High Performance Mentality. Once you develop a HPM, you’ll be able to reach your best potential and the level of performance you always wanted.

leo frincu photosLeo Frincu came to the United States from Communist Romania with $10, a back pack and four words of English. Now, he’s a businessman, renowned trainer and mentor for UFC women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey. Among his many athletic accomplishments, Leo is a six-time Romanian wrestling champion, four-time European champion and was also trainer and coach for the 2003 U.S. Olympic Wrestling Team. Leo is the author of a new book, “Choosing Freedom,” which details the steps he took to leave the oppressive Romanian society through wrestling and how his experiences have helped him in the United States – going from a bus boy to successful entrepreneur. You can learn more about Leo Frincu on his website Also, follow Leo on Twitter @leofrincu and “LIKE” his page on Facebook.

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