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2023 Reflection and Lessons

Happy New Year!! Wishing you all the health and happiness you deserve in 2024!

As I reflect on 2023, here are the top 23 lessons (in no particular order) and some great reminders that stand out for me.

Let me know if any resonate with you or if there's some you would like to add to the list. 

  1. Immediately and always cultivate quality relationships with every client, member, staff member, network colleague, etc that you encounter. A good relationship enhances everything! A bad relationship inhibits everything. 

  1. Prioritize Sleep Quality: it literally helps everything.  It's one of the most overlooked but highest impact health habits. Highlight the role of quality sleep in recovery and peak performance. Having a pre-bed routine (much like a morning routine), can both enhance or detract from sleep. Learn what works best for you to optimize the quality of your sleep. 

  1. Prioritize Overall Mental Health and Ability: I’ve seen LOTS of very fit and strong athletes fail in sports because they failed to combine mental fortitude with their physical attributes. Your energy flows where your attention goes. Recognize the impact of mental well-being on performance, both in sports and business. This isn’t just about whether someone is on medication for feeling good mentally. This is about how we think, how sharp our reactions and thoughts are, how efficient and effective we can problem solve, etc.

  1. Remember to Think Big Picture: especially when things don't add up at first. We often get too caught up in the minutiae and forget about the big picture and true purpose looking only at specifics versus the whole scenario. Sometimes we just need to think beyond the box to know what needs to be done to the box’s problem.

  1. Mindfully Embrace Technology: Learn to leverage the latest advancements to enhance training methods and business strategies. But at the same time ensure you are using the  technology and not the other way around. Tech is just a tool, and tools are never good or bad - the intention they are used with for a certain purpose makes them good or bad. If we mindlessly allow technology to run our lives - are we actively living, or just a passive passenger slowly being taken over?

  1. Chase Challenges and Cultivate Resilience: When we chase challenges, we find growth and success. When we chase comfort, we find discomfort and failure. Teach athletes and adults to actively choose to chase calculated challenges. This will inherently teach them how to bounce back from setbacks (growth), fostering resilience in the face of challenges, leading to success in many facets of life. In a dynamic fast changing world, the ability to be resilient to stress and adapt in your best interests, rather than just the easiest option,  will be crucial for long term true health and success 

  1. Take a Deep Holistic Approach to health: Acknowledge the interconnectedness of physical, mental, biochemical, neurological, environmental, emotional and spiritual aspects for overall health and performance. This one is a LOADED lesson, but keeping it simple, just like lesson #4, thinking holistically is taking the big picture into consideration.

  1. Always Integrate Immediately what You Learn: In both your life and your practice. Then once understood - teach to others: Far too often folks go to a course, only to store the material away thinking they’ve acquired knowledge that will help them. That is only true when the knowledge is acted upon, regularly. Stay updated with the latest research and trends to provide cutting-edge coaching and advice. And remember the best way to learn, is to teach. When you learn something new, confirm its validity, and then teach you to others that can benefit.

  1. Networking Matters: Build a strong network for mutual support, collaboration, and opportunities. Think about how you can help your network more than only thinking about what your network can do for you. I love talking about making “good will investments” where I think about who I can help without expecting anything in return. Although nothing is expected in return, down the road when I truly need help the goodwill investment(s) has more than likely grown and can be withdrawn from for some much needed help.

  1. Time Management: We all have the same 24hr clock, what we stuff it with determines if we have the time to do something or not. There’s lots of practices to talk about here, but one of my favorite way to set up for success is by planning ahead and shaping the path for the desired outcomes. On Friday, I review the week and prioritize the 1-3 things that need to happen over the weekend, so I can both enjoy the weekend and also be productive if needed. Then Sunday, I plan my week with my most important behaviors first, followed by other work priorities. It usually looks something like this - 1) family stuff, 2) daily meditation and sleep habits, 3) workouts, 4) meal times, 5) clients and 6) business operations

  1. Goal Setting: Encourage setting clear, realistic goals, both short-term and long-term, for sustained progress. I do a 30, 60, 90 day goal setting exercise (called my strategic plan). I do one for life and one for business, then simply stick to the plan with a focused, but open mindset. Then, every 90 days I look back over the past 90, and do it again. 

  1. Nutrition & hydration as a Foundation: Emphasize the importance of proper nutrition and hydration habits as a cornerstone for optimal health and performance. From what type and how much water I’m drinking to what foods work best for my body. What works best for me might be totally different for you or my clients. The key is making this a non-negotiable foundation to your health that high quality nutrition and hydration are priorities to you. 

  1. Daily Meditation: focus on being more introspective and engage in daily meditative practices. Incorporate mindfulness techniques to enhance health, mental focus, concentration, reduce stress, improve immune functioning, and so much more.

  1. Encourage More Time Spent In Nature: there’s so many anecdotal and data proven health benefits of spending time in the woods or walking barefoot in the grass. I try to get at least a 15-20 minute walk outside everyday - preferably among trees and with sunlight whenever possible. There’s a HOST of benefits to getting 20-30 minutes of daily sunlight, preferably earlier in the morning, with as much bare skin exposure as possible / comfortable / able. 

  1. Focus on being Consistent over being Perfect. The B+ plan, done consistently well, always outperforms the A+ plan that cannot be performed consistently. With nutrition, exercise, business - we don’t have to be perfect, just consistently doing things that move us forward in a sustainable way (ie. we can continue to be consistent). I have yet to meet a successful athlete or entrepreneur that hasn’t “failed” many times before. 

  1. Understand where the Data comes from when using Data-Driven Decision-Making: Data is great, but if it's skewed or incorrect in the first place the outcome will always be incorrect. This goes for life, business, coaching, etc. 

  1. Align Behaviors (actions) and Beliefs (thoughts) to optimize health, success and fulfillment. When these are aligned, our health, performance and sense of feeling good will flourish. Most folks today have a hard time first, calibrating their beliefs about themselves which then lead to ineffective behaviors. (Much like lesson 16 - you yourself can be the source of bad info.

  1. Work-Life Balance: Strive for a healthy balance between training or work commitments and personal life. If we have all our life points invested in career,  there is nothing left for life, loved ones, etc and that is a guaranteed recipe for burnout and an unfulfilled life. Have a hobby that is not related to your career, this should be purely for fun and not related to generating money / business (at least not directly)

  1. Clear and Positive Communication: Emphasize the impact of positive communication on team dynamics and client relationships. The language we use (especially with yourself) carries a HUGE impact on our emotions and thus, our actions. Positive self-talk is associated with a host of health benefits as well, whereas negative self-talk is associated with a host of health risks.. 

  1. Have Compassion for Yourself and Others: It’s our choice to focus on the bright side, or the dark side of any situation. If we always focus on the things we’re doing wrong rather than what we’re doing right, life can seem pretty bleak. The best hitters in baseball are only successful 30-35% of the time - and I believe life is a harder skill to master than hitting a baseball (arguable lol). Allow yourself to feel compassion both for yourself and others, especially when you do not know others' situations. 

  1. Your Personality is your Personal Brand: How you show up, interact, and behave (both when the camera is on and off) make up your personal brand. A strong personal brand, especially cultivated over a long period of time, will outperform the sexiest sales strategies in both the short and long term. This will both create and enhance all opportunities.

  1. What You See May Differ From How Others See the Same thing: Your perspective is likely different from others, and that’s totally ok. Remember to take a different look when things aren’t aligning to challenge whether your input is actually correct. I want friends that see things differently so we can help calibrate each other when we’re confused. 

  1. Have a Legacy Mindset: Encourage staff, athletes and all clients to consider the legacy they want to leave in both their careers and personal lives. The money we make can be left behind, but no one remembers that. What you do in this world, the impact you have on others is what will be remembered. 

Of course there’s THOUSANDS more lessons from 2023. 

These were just some of the highlights I remember having deep conversations with so many about. 

I hope they help spark some introspection and deep thoughts on how you can live your best life!! 

Happy New Year!

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