Saturday, September 14, 2013

Badger Johnson - Adding to Arnold's Six Principles of Success

On July 30, 2013 I posted:

My friend, Badger Johnson, sent me a few add-on's on Facebook. I requested of him to flesh out the few he had. He came back instead with a whole article! Posted below with his kind permission is that article.

My deepest gratitude to Badger Johnson for sharing his Principles of Success and of his time, experience and knowledge.

Adding to Arnold's Six Principles of Success:

  1. It's all about the 'how', not the 'what'. Many books tell you what do to but don't help you to figure out how to do it. How do you start, how do you monitor, how do you proceed, how do you keep it up.
  2. First learn how to be your own coach. Look at what coaches do - they gather data on your performance. They proceed in graded steps - nobody got to the Olympics in one step.
  3. Don't take yourself too seriously. Note how many top athletes when they can't win at top level competitions, just stop all together. Note how many SEALS who are in tiptop shape, once they are out of the arena just go all to hell. If they didn't take themselves too seriously they'd be able to reduce their expectations and still be winners. You also want to avoid hubris or having too full of a cup to learn from anyone, even a child.
  4. Understand 'expectations'. They can both gel and hinder you. If your expectations are such, and another path opens up you might be too restricted to modify. If you expect something big and something 'ok' comes along you might be prevented from taking a favorable path. Certainly don't unnecessarily lower your expectations, but don't let them rule you.
  5. Let your partner bring their 'A game'. IOW, don't be so overwhelming that you stuff all opportunity, only work from strength and thus stuff your partner's 'game'. By game I mean anything and everything. By letting others bring their A game and by taking a weakened position (such as being mounted in BJJ) you learn to develop your flow and your technique. You fill gaps and holes in your game. You develop synergy. Thanks to Prof Pedro Sauer for this insight.
  6. Go for the win-win scenario over the 'crush your opponents'. If both can win a little in a negotiation both feel better, and you can come back and negotiate again, people respect this. You don't back people into a corner or make them lose face unnecessarily. Works in business and self-defense. Nobody's coming back to the bar with a chain saw after you because you made them unduly lose face.
  7. Nobody's perfect. We all have problems, or neuroses. Rather than deny your weaknesses, know your limits, work within them. If your foot is hurting, work your upper body, don't get all morose and quit. Manage your neuroses by seeing them as opportunities. Own both your wins and your losses. Win and lose gracefully in all areas, big and small. You are not weighed down by grudges and resentments.
  8. Keep a journal and track your progress or lack of same. You can't see the 'big picture' without help. Now we have computers, blogs, online calorie counters. It's much easier to track your workouts, your progress and you can see where you peak and learn how to taper (mentally and physically). If you're journalling you are much less likely to miss a workout and leave a blank entry.
  9. Be aware of synergy. Look for it. If you're taking your vitamins and getting out for fresh air, soon you think, 'well, I should eat a little better, if I'm spending money on supplements or I'm wasting them).
  10. Manage your 'training dollar'. We only have so much time to train or learn or study. Try to realize the Paredo principle - 80% of your success comes from 20% of your work.
  11. The keys to success are consistency, not getting injured, and taking small steps. They are not so much found by doing a great effort then backing off for a month. Small steps daily add up. Track them. See the big picture. Learn how your body and mind work. Don't worry if you're having a down period, because you want to track that too.
  12. Learn how to research. Look for root causes and go to the original source. Make weak aspects strong. By journalling you are researching your own experience.
  13. Learn 'how to think'. By that I mean how to think deeply, try to figure out the how. People say 'think outside the box'. What's more important is figure out -how- to do that. How do people learn to think laterally. Some of it is getting a 10,000 foot view. Some of it is seeing how others have done things. Look for times when you applied a clever, elegant solution. Something is elegant when it is simple, direct and can be expressed in just a few words.
  14. Look for landmarks, develop a framework. From that you can go back and put things into the framework and have it work for you. Your framework if elegantly constructed will help problem solve. Keep records of problems you've solved and be aware that the 'emotional response is not always the best way'. It's about 'what works'.
  15. Internalizing. Thinks can be apparent and you might know what to do, but until that urge comes from inside yourself you are not truly free. Figure out how to make your values and your emotions come into alignment. A person who can do that, a person who is not at the mercy of the first person that can anger them is truly evolved. We internalize by positive and negative self-talk, done consistently and if possible done while moving and utilizing the breath. 
Some more ideas are: 
  • 'discover how to stress test your methods', 
  • 'seek to be a black belt in all areas of life, even ones that scare you like finances', 
  • 'learn how to listen, how to mirror what others (especially your partner) is telling you'.

Anytime you hear someone say something about a 'what to do' stop and think to yourself 'what is the 'HOW' of that?'. How do you accomplish this 'what to do' suggestion'. It's all about the how. Most of the time we find out how after a long trial and error, but if you listen you can go more directly, even though you take baby steps you get there sooner. Also remember you can't tell anyone anything - they have to have it come to them from inside. Even if they know it's true it won't work as an external thing.
Thus a good therapist is good at listening and perhaps mirroring and the client sees things and they come true from inside effecting real change.

Though I sometimes feel I have a lot to say, sometimes I make myself just shut up and listen and listen. It's something you must practice.

Hope this is of use, Stick!
-Badger 2013.

The above article expands on 2 previous entries by Badger which he graciously allowed me to share:

Please check out Badger Johnson's other essays:

Here's to your Success!



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Stickgrappler's Sojourn of Septillion Steps