“We don’t rise to the level of our expectations, we fall to the level of our training.”
When I think of peak performance I think of LeBron James (pictured).
When LeBron is on the court he is totally in the zone, totally focused and composed.
What we don’t see is the hours of hours LeBron dedicates every day to practicing his skills, we only see the results of his training in competition.
Because we don’t see those hours LeBron dedicates to practicing, we all just assume that LeBron is pure talent.
‘He’s lucky he is talented’ they say, but talent or high IQ are not the main ingredient to getting and staying at the top of any field!
“The first crucial lesson is that elite athletes are not born but made.”
– Graham Jones is co-founder and director of Lane4 Management Group, a performance development consultancy that specializes in creating high-performance environments in organizations. He is the author or co-author of several books, the most recent of which, Thriving on Pressure: Mental Toughness for Real Leaders, was released in October 2009.
So it is not one’s some inborn natural ability, but one’s ability to persist and dedicate to grinding it out all day everyday.
Over the years I’ve accumulated a number of peak performance tools that I will share with you, adding tools to this page to help you improve your performance in areas reading and thinking.
I will let you ultimately decide if a particular tool is useful for your own life, as some may not be relevant.
I’ll provide a heading and a brief description of each tool to help you decide.
Read to Lead
Ryan Holiday, author of numerous NY Times Bestsellers, provides a guide to reading and understanding complex books above our own ‘level’. To invest successfully requires us to be continually learning new concepts and the fast we learn the fast we increase our own earning potential.
We will be able to spot new investment opportunities that the average investor doesn’t understand.
Robert Greene, author of the 48 Laws of Power and a NY Times Bestseller, said; “Your mind is the key that will turn this [obstacle] to advantage, not your wealth.” This one line is very important in life, from my own experience, I’ve learnt that it isn’t the company with lots of cash, think ‘deep pockets’, that beats their competitors, it is the company that has the ability to think and act and leverage technology to outmaneuver the competition that ultimately wins.
Kodak and Instagram are the perfect contemporary example. Kodak was a billion dollar company, Instagram was a startup with no money. Within 5 years the tables had turned, and now Instagram is worth billions and kodak went bankrupt!
‘I can’t (insert objective) do that because I have no money’, is an excuse! creativity, persistence and leverage are the three keys to achieving your objective.
In this article Greene writes about how to OODA loop is a model we all can adapt to our lives to help achieve our objectives.
Spending 10 minutes sitting quietly can improve your focus and productivity. No you don’t need to become a monk! Unfortunately like all new practices the gain mainstream attention, there always a few people who market themselves as the GURU and make outlandish claims like ‘that this can cure cancer’.
The sole purpose I meditate or 10 minutes in the morning is because I’ve found that my ability to focus on one task improved dramatically. How? I found that I had develop this ability to monitor my own thoughts in the third person, for instance, if a thought about the future appeared like ‘I need to do X tomorrow’ I’d quickly acknowledge it and refocus on the task at hand, instead of going down the rabbit hole and thinking about the details of tomorrows task.
It didn’t happen over night, but you should notice a difference in 7 days.
The 5 Step Process for Generating New Ideas
Maria Popova, who is founder of Brain Pickings (one of my favorite blogs), wrote a post about James Webb Young — an ad man by trade but, as we’ll see, a voraciously curious and cross-disciplinary thinker at heart — lays out with striking lucidity and clarity the five essential steps for a productive creative process, touching on a number of elements corroborated by modern science and thinking on creativity: its reliance on process over mystical talent, its combinatorial nature, its demand for a pondering period, its dependence on the brain’s unconscious processes, and more. (Original Source)
Getting in the Zone