Title fight psychology
I’ve been having trouble sleeping. I think it’s daylight savings time nearing it’s end (that always happens to me). It doesn’t help that I have been feeling more anxious over the past two weeks about my fight. Psychology is so interesting. You can know things in your brain but your body reacts a different way despite that.
I wake up at 2 AM, thinking about my fight. Wake up at 2:30 thinking about my fight. Then 3:45.
I have been telling myself that this “title” really is just a title, and a fight is a fight, so I only really care more about the fight than the title. I’ve had a few traumatic experiences where I hadn’t done enough stamina training and my arms and legs felt like heavy lead, so I know that this absolutely can’t happen this time. Since I’ve been at Syndicate, this has never happened, though. Only in Japan and on the Ultimate Fighter.
I’ve been doing my homework, i.e. running stairs and doing burpie sets throughout the week. So before I started my circuit sessions these past two weeks, I was thinking, “I BETTER be able to get through this no problem!” And that thought lead to, “If not, that means my favorite method of cardio isn’t good enough!” And that thought lead to, “I’ll be behind and not able to get in good enough shape.” So there were three worries right there.
But the sessions went very well and proved that everything is fine. Same thing on Wednesday when John and Jess shark-tanked me. I felt anxious before that and awesome and confident afterwards.
I realized that I’ve been imagining training days as how it’s going to come out in the fight, which is not necessarily good. “I better be able to land this punch or else…” “It’ll suck if I can’t last the whole class because blah blah hurts….” If I got taken down by a teammate and try a technique and it failed, I got stressed out. Tuesday, one of my nagging injuries that comes and goes was really bugging me, and I was feeling nervous about being able to perform the techniques I’d been practicing in my private lessons. Usually I just “want” to land the techniques. I don’t worry about “oh what if I can’t.” Two worries. But I did it and it was all fine. I powered through it practice without gassing out and it was alright.
Yep, negative thoughts. I hadn’t even realized I was thinking negative thoughts. I’m usually pretty good about siphoning them out. That’s why they call me The Happy Warrior. With the help of my coach and Mom and friends, sometimes.
Testing myself with the hard rounds this week pretty much confronted and eliminated those anxieties.
I used to drive to training thinking merry thoughts like, “Oh boy, I wonder how many combinations I’ll be able to land today. I can’t wait to try and foil Shawn’s takedowns. I can’t wait to try and escape from Hannah’s guard. I can’t wait to try and take down Jessica off the cage. I’ll see if I can avoid Adam’s lightning combos.”
My mom texted me the following:
“Well, being anxious/stressing out/worrying seems to be fear in disguise. You are not a fearful person. You are not driven by fear. Somehow you have to internalize your confidence in yourself to combat the fear. Know in your heart and soul that you are performing to the best of your ability. You need to search out that thought that is making you anxious and confront that fear.”
That reminds me of what Coach John tells me before fights – you know in your heart that you did your best to prepare to the best of your ability. Have confidence in the techniques.
I am genuinely excited to go to Syndicate every single day. Every day holds new challenges and potential for growth. Potential for pain, too, but I don’t think about that. So yesterday I just let the whole fight thing go and went to the gym to train and get better and try my techniques. I love doing MMA – that’s the bottom line. When the fight day arrives, I will apply those techniques to my opponent. No use stressing out over landing or not landing a take-down at the moment. Just try it, learn from it, get better from it. I’m in great shape already. I already proved that I have the stamina and skills and now I just have to wait for fight day! I have great tools in my tool box. And there will be more by the time the fight rolls around. I have a great, strong, skilled opponent waiting for me. And a strong, caring, supportive team behind me.
I have loving friends and fans around me. Dude, you’ve gotta be a die-hard fan or best friend to dress up like this, right?!
I’m tempted to say, “I can’t possibly lose!” but of course I can lose. That’s why it’s a fight, and I’m so ready.
I walked into the gym excited to try my techniques and it was a really amazing practice with no stress or fear. Chapter 7, “Be Excited about Everything.” Bam!!! Read my book, sold here:
Haha Coach John had once told me, “Go read your own book” one day when I looked down. He’s right. He’s
always usually right. 😉
I just did a radio interview and one of the guys said, “You never have a bad day!” Hah not true. But I know how I think and I can manipulate my own emotions with my thoughts. Lol read my book…..
Big goals or tasks are always overwhelming. You always have to break them down into little small short-term, easily achievable goals. Finish this scramble. Then finish this round. Then get a new partner and finish the first minute. Then finish the round. Before you know it, you got through a tough training sessions. Don’t think ahead. Things never happen as you imagine they will.
Same for other things in life.…