parents make this mistake

parents make this mistake

 Sport Parents Make This Mistake And It’s Dangerous. 

This is not a click-bait title, this post is about stopping this mistake that can literally save your young athlete! But, parents make this mistake all of the time. 

Albert Jennings was one of the top youth golfers in the entire nation before his 15th birthday. He won 90% of the tournaments he entered between ages 10-15 years old. He not only practiced and played golfer every single day and played in a tournament every three days, but he always wore pants when he golfed.  As a kid, he wore pants because was going to be on the PGA Tour.

PGA Tour player and 3x All-American Patrick Rodgers, once asked him “How could [he] get to Albert’s level?” 

So, what happens to the prodigy and wunderkind when they start to struggle? It’s the same thing that happens to all good athletes, it depends on the parents.  

As parents, what is the precedent that we set after unsuccessful outcomes and poor results? 

 A precedent is a rule or principle that serves as a guide for future decisions. I never thought it was applicable outside of the law and especially to sport parents. Oh my, how I was wrong. 

Read 10 Reminders if You’re A Stressed Out Parent of An Athlete

Parents make this mistake of setting a poor precedent after every important game.

  • Do we as parents start drilling them on the way home?
  • Is our role to point out everything they did incorrectly and how they can “get better?”
  • Is comparing them to others a common theme for us? 
  • Is the precedent we set immediately calling their coach?
  • Do we hit up another practice session right away?
  • Do we yell or pile on about how they aren’t “trying?”

On a long enough timeline, when do we as parents start to internally panic after enough mediocre results and feel helpless to just fix it for them? 

How parents behave and communicate after an event is the precedent that is set. Parents make this mistake by setting bad examples. 

When Albert Jennings started to struggle and not meet the super high expectations, the precedent took over, which was “what’s the matter with the swing?” Something is WRONG and we must FIX it! After every single unsuccessful event, it became what’s the matter? 

Listen to my guest episode on Parenting Peak Performers Podcast.

Focusing only on the problem and trying to figure it out for them begins a vicious negative cycle. What happens is that The athlete starts to search instead of practice. Very quickly the bottom can drop out because they get away from sound fundamentals. Their confidence which is already fragile now becomes an issue and once athletes lose confidence, it’s difficult to get it back.  

Athlete’s that had success early, yet later on struggle, face a difficult path. They often start to question their own athletic identity of “I win.” More importance is then placed upon results and outcome to regain their identity of “this is who I am.”! Now, they feel like they are on an island by themselves and if they are unlucky enough to be told “it’s all in your head,” then they are shot into the abyss. 

If we stare at the abyss long enough, the abyss stares back at us! 

When we set a poor precedent as parents, we are inserting ourselves into the mix of how to fix what went wrong and soon, the young athlete looks for you to solve it for them! We do not build capacity that way, all it does is build dependency. We don’t know what we don’t know, but sadly parents make this mistake of setting the wrong precedent and it can be one of the most detrimental actions toward development. 

We all want the best for our own kids, but isn’t it odd that we are the hardest on those who we love the most? We are hardest on them because we also have the highest of expectations for them. 

Parents, we NEED to develop a healthy relationship with winning & losing. Setting the correct precedent means simply operating the same after good and bad outcomes! We need to have a game plan before events and think about balance and perspective and keeping the sport pure. 

I interviewed Albert and gained so much wisdom from him. His insight is incredible and just know that he’ll be an awesome golf coach!

dr rob bell

Dr. Rob Bell is a Sport Psychology Coach. His company DRB & Associates is based in Indianapolis.  Some clients have included: Indy Eleven, University of Notre Dame, Marriott, and Walgreens. Check out all the books.   

Please check out the podcast 15 Minutes of Mental Toughness as we interview expert athletes and coaches about Mental Strength and their Hinge Moment.

shut-off your mind before bedtime

 5 Ways to “Shut-Off” Your Mind Before Bedtime

Multiple techniques have been introduced already for a person to sleep faster. Among these options, shutting off the brain is deemed to be the most effective. Once your mind is relaxed, have a sound evening rest would be a lot easier.

However, here’s the catch: trying to shut-off your mind before bedtime is TOUGH!  Our brain is designed to think and to process ideas. It is entirely reasonable, but during bedtime, it is a harrowing experience. Some thoughts are gnawing and can turn into worries.

Again, it is true that you can’t easily shut off your brain. Despite this, you can still elevate all the essential requirements for your mind and body to get relaxed. 

Here’s are 5 ways to shut-off your mind before bedtime.

Shut Down Your Devices

It is true that you can’t switch-off your mental faculties. However, you can always help your mind and eyes relax by shutting down the gadgets that surround you. The radiation alone that is coming from these things can distract and stress your eyes.

While it is true that people are not prohibited to install entertainment systems on their bedrooms, it is still recommended that you won’t use them during or before your sleeping time. The things that you watch can play into your head, causing your mind to be active when it shouldn’t be.

Take a Warm Bath

There’s nothing wrong if you want to spoil yourself before bedtime. Before you go to sleep, it would be a nice thing if you could take a warm bath or shower. This kind of pleasure can also help in soothing your mind–allowing you to sleep faster.

Raising the temperature of your body will cause your body to feel sedated. It ensures that your entire system is relaxed and your mind, satisfied. Of course, when you have a relaxed mind, sleeping would never be a problem on your part.

You can also include some additives in your bath. Why not include scented herbs and lotions in the equation? They can double the sedating effect that your body can feel.

Get a Nice Bedroom

Honestly, it is pretty difficult to rest on a place where there is a lot of clutter and mess. Before you can find peace, make sure that your environment is conducive enough to support your goal.

Cleaning your bedroom is already a good start. Just clean all the rubbish that you see. Take out any heap of garbage that is sprawling round. Eliminate all items that cause distractions and uneasiness to you.

Of course, you have to fix your bed, too. Find an ergonomic mattress that can make you feel comfortable and relaxed. You also need to get a set of soft pillows to optimize the relaxation that your mind and body can handle.

Try Yoga

Yoga is an activity that elevates your mental control, concentration, and calm. It is not just a routine where you have to twist your body on some weird and extreme angles. In fact, even those who aren’t skinny enough can do the acrobatics in yoga.

Yoga is said to be an exercise that connects the body, mind, and spirit. This is the very reason why the regimen in yoga is not as extensive as those you can see in the gym. Instead, what yoga develops is discipline so that people can learn proper meditation to achieve a relaxed state.

Furthermore, it has been said that yoga also improves the quality of your evening rest. For instance, to stop snoring, some yoga routines should be executed.

Play Relaxing Sounds

Not all noises are distracting. Some of them can cause your mind to feel calm. For sleeping, it is best if you can play natural sounds–such of those that replicate that ocean, wind, or rain. Our brain accepts them as sedatives, so they are really useful for those whose minds are too baffled for sleep.

You can play these noises on a repeated loop until such time you fall asleep. Make it as a low noise or something that would serve as an audio background to your bedroom.

Wrapping it Up

You don’t need to have a “dead mind” so that you can sleep fast and comfortably. Instead, what you need is a brain that is entirely calm and soothed. It is the one that you need so that you can sleep peacefully during the night.

These techniques that have been introduced in this article are among the most efficient methods for relaxing and strengthening your mind. Please try them and see which ones work best for you.

Layla Parker is the founder and chief editor of I decided to start taking my blog about sleep seriously to help people find what they need to experience better sleep and maintain their health. 



Top Ogo Best Leadership Podcast Episodes

Top Ogo Best Leadership Podcast Episodes

Top 10 David Novak oGoLeadtm Best Leadership Podcast Episodes

As former CEO of Yum Brands, by the time David Novak was 12 years old, he had lived in 32 trailer parks in 23 states.  I was introduced to this podcast by one of my golfers on Tour. I immediately started listening to every single episode. It took me several months, but here are the filet mignon of episodes. David does an excellent job of allowing every guest to share their experience and his demeanor is evident why he was such a significant leader himself. 


I’m a big fan of Harry Arnett having met him at the PGA Show, so I’m biased! Callaway is an excellent brand of innovation and consistency in the role of professional golf. (i.e. Callaway live show). “Innovate or Die” was an incredible lesson learned that Harry discusses in this episode. It was a failure that taught a big lesson. That experience in part allowed his own staff a space to evaluate and judge different ideas.



Spider Miller is a golfer who won the US Mid-Am in 1996 & 1998.  Winning was a hinge moment that allowed him to play in The Masters with Arnold Palmer where they developed a deep relationship. From Indiana, the stories about Spider are legendary. He was also the 2x Walker Cup captain and captain of the “winning 2017 Walker Cup team.”  It’s an excellent episode on his business acumen as well!



Hmmm, another golf episode, do you see a coincidental theme for the top leadership podcast episodes? I listened to this episode while on the bike trainer for my Ironman. His story about his first days as CEO was quite the experience. He shares how he was able to bring the U.S. Open to Shinnecock Hills Golf Club by making the Shinnecock nation part of that process. It’s an excellent lesson in leadership because there was major strife between the factions.



From a family of jockeys, she rode her first race at age 21 to actually eliminate horse racing as a career. Her perspective on winning and success was simple- “Do you want to win races as a jockey? Ride for people who win races.” The story about her broadcast career and especially interviewing Calvin Borel after winning the derby was very moving. Her message is “you have to find your niche’ in life!” She is inspiring!



Ken Langone has a fantastic story! He is a collection of many people and is NOT a self-made individual. He epitomizes the notion that NO ONE Gets There ALONE.

He is always learning and still working! His leadership style is represented by Home Depot that has 3,000 people working WITH them (not for them) who started pushing carts and now are multi-millionaires. It’s great hearing about how the only mistakes he regrets are the mistakes in judgment.



An excellent story about how he bought out his father from the business at a young age. His quote and theme for life are top-notch- “You can’t B.S. the person in the mirror.” It is interesting that one of the best leadership podcast episodes addresses their Youth Sports Initiative and Sports Matter Foundation. After the parkland High-school shooting, Dick’s also took the courageous lead by announcing that they would stop selling assault firearms and to anyone under 21 years old.   



This is a 2-part series. Tom Brady was a 6th rd, 299th overall pick. He epitomized capturing a Hinge moment! He is one of the best, if not the best quarterbacks in the game and what he has overcome is remarkable! His experience as a leader is undeniable, especially his take on confidence and emotion! “The NFL season is like climbing a mountain, everyone starts the same and the climb is long and arduous, but worth the summit.” 



It’s tough not to root for Rory after listening to this podcast. He’s won four majors but is driven as ever and he delves into his “why.” He discusses his growth as a player and how his team has developed across the years. He addresses overcoming injuries in his career and speaking his mind and being authentic. Gratitude is a cornerstone as well that he feels is a huge part of life! This is one of the best leadership podcast episodes!



Since I’ve worked with the University of Notre Dame Athletics, the impact of Jimmy Dunne is evident with the sports programs. One hinge moment came as he was rejected to every law school he applied. However, a player who he used to caddy for, instead directed him to Wall Street. He cites “playing like your behind” as the key to success. After 9/11, it was a difficult situation, so he took specific financial steps to help the firm establish an esprit de corps. One of my favorite parts of the podcast is when he refers to what he looks for in employees: refined desperation



Southwest Airlines had over one hundred and thirty million customer boarding’s last year. Again, I’m biased because I love Southwest airlines. What most impressed me about this interview is that Southwest Airlines has NEVER laid off or furloughed employees or cut pay. Their mission is to treat every customer like guests in their own home!

dr rob bell

Dr. Rob Bell is a Sport Psychology Coach. His company DRB & Associates is based in Indianapolis.  Some clients have included: Indy Eleven, University of Notre Dame, Marriott, and Walgreens. Check out all the books.   

Please check out the podcast 15 Minutes of Mental Toughness as we interview expert athletes and coaches about Mental Strength and their Hinge Moment.

How to Win When Life is Unfair

How to Win When Life is Unfair

How to Win When Life is Unfair

Meldrick Taylor won the Gold Medal in boxing at the 1984 Olympics. Soon after, he took his 99-4 amateur record, turned professional, won the light welterweight title, and took his undefeated record into another title fight. It became the fight of the decade! 

In 1990, the welterweight title fight occurred between the challenger, Meldrick Taylor, 24-0-1, and the champion, Julio Ceasar Chavez, 68-0.

Going into the last round, Meldrick Taylor, the underdog,  had a lead over the champion, and Chavez needed a knockout to win. However, with 17 seconds left, Chavez tagged Taylor and actually knocked him down. Meldrick Taylor got up within five seconds, but with referee Richard Steele counting and only 2 seconds left…called the fight.

Jim Lampley announced, “This is the most unusual call by a referee in the history of the sport.”

If just two (2) more seconds were allowed to tick away, the fight would have gone to the scorecards, and Meldrick Taylor would have won a split decision. 

Chavez was strengthened after the fight and he became the greatest Mexican fighter of all-time stretching his unbeaten record to 89-0-1 before losing a match.

Although Philadelphia native, Meldrick Taylor fought the fight of his life, he suffered for it. In the hospital after the fight, it was reported that he experienced a facial eye fracture, was urinating pure blood, and even suffered short-term memory loss. 

The end result of the fight was that it was not fair, it was taken out of the hands of the fighters at that moment. 

So, here’s how to win when life is unfair

1) Fairness does not mean entitlement- 

I had so many publishers reject my first book, was that unfair? 

Your good works will sometimes get overlooked. Other people may be picked or chosen or get the job you wanted. You may not be the one on stage or whose named is called for the award.

Are those instances unfair? Or are they just difficult outcomes to handle and accept? 

I once gave away my soccer suite to some high profile entrepreneurs. Never got a thank you and when I asked for a favor several months later, it was crickets. Was that unfair, or just how it is sometimes? 

Remember, when someone says “it is what it is,” that means something bad happened! 

No one wants to admit that there are events and situations that are out of our control or that life is unfair. But, the fans on the losing side of any game are the ones who complain most about the refs. They play the blaming game and feel they are entitled. 

Look at your situation and is it unfair, or is there a feeling of entitlement because you feel you deserve it? 

When we lose, we need to be able to find what we learned from the situation and not automatically deem it unfair. 

2) Luck is part of it-

Luck is preparation meeting opportunity.

Let’s face it, how to win when life is unfair means you have to get lucky. Now, no one wants to admit that luck is part of it. I get it. But, it doesn’t make it any less real. 

What is crucial is the Importance of The Hinge and Mental Toughness. Every single one of us will have opportunities. What we do with that opportunity when it arrives is what connects who we are with who we become! 

Since luck is part of the equation, then we need to connect with and develop relationships with as many people as possible, because we just don’t know who can be that Hinge for us! 

We can’t isolate, because only mushrooms grow in the dark! 

3) Respond don’t react-

It doesn’t matter how well you’ve prepared, things will go wrong!

It’s a matter of “when” NOT “if” adversity will strike. Proper preparation means that you’ll know how to win when life is unfair! 

Luck, other people, people’s perception of us, other’s expectations, are all out of our control. We can influence others, but we do not control them. 

How we respond to adversity, however, is 100% in our control. We are in our control of how we look at bad events, as either unfair and unjust, or actually as an opportunity. 

When we are in the midst of the struggle, we need to respond, not react to adversity. 

4) It’s not about the setback, it’s about the comeback- 

Meldrick Taylor lost the fight of the decade and did suffer for it, but he also came back and WON the WBA Welterweight title and three successful defenses of that belt. 

Amy Beth Acker writes that wanting life to be fair is a major block to peace.  Acceptance is the key to all of life’s problems! 

We are going to lose. But, when we do lose, we need to do this instead… Remember, it’s not about the setback, it’s about the comeback. It matters how we respond and bounce back after the defeats. That’s how to win when life is unfair!

5) Why? 

Life is a mystery. I am clueless and baffled why natural disasters occur, why a two-year-old would develop cancer or sickle cell anemia, why a loved one develops an addiction or suffers, or how one begins to cope with losing a child. Most of life is filled with inconveniences, but these aforementioned are tragedies!

I believe that there is a God, and I know that I am not it. What I do know is that a tragedy, even though we don’t welcome it, actually becomes the strongest type of hinge. 

Tragedies are an immediate hinge. However, the worse type of tragedies are not what takes place to us— but what we do to ourselves. We will make mistakes. We’ll make poor decisions. However, aside from mistakes, or bad decisions, every one of us has defects of character or weaknesses that we really don’t want. It matters how we respond to the adversity and setbacks in life. 

dr rob bell

Dr. Rob Bell is a Sport Psychology Coach. His company DRB & Associates is based in Indianapolis.  Some clients have included: Indy Eleven, University of Notre Dame, Marriott, and Walgreens. Check out all the books.   

Please check out the podcast 15 Minutes of Mental Toughness as we interview expert athletes and coaches about Mental Strength and their Hinge Moment.

mental toughness lessons

mental toughness lessonsmental toughness lessons 

I recently spoke to James Lawrence, The Iron Cowboy on my podcast. He completed 50 Ironmans, in 50 days, in 50 states.

I did one. 

.0007% of the world’s population complete an ironman every year. Walking down the street in the United States and you’ll meet 1 Ironman in every 1000 people. Guess it depends on your circle, because I’ll see four or five of them during every road workout. 

The entire race took longer than it was for us to drive from the Eastern Shore back to Indianapolis. 

Here’s the 5 Epic Mental Toughness Lessons I Learned from the Ironman. 

Have a Why

If not now, when? If not you, then who? I couldn’t answer those questions!

When Rob, When? 

I once wrote down one hundred things that I wanted to do before I died. A full Ironman was on there. But, that was not a deep enough present day why. 

My major “why” had to do with others. My family, Josh Fugate, Izzy, and Tyler Trent. A friend from church, Todd Dolbeer passed away from pancreatic cancer days before the race and I thought about him as well. 

Your why has to make you cry, if it doesn’t it’s not your why. 

There simply will never be a perfect time for anything challenging and epic in our lives. We are all too busy! So, quit getting ready to get ready and just do it. 

Face Your Fear and Do It Anyways

I started training on July 1st. I had 90 days to prepare for the race… My biggest fear was the bike. Not only did I have to borrow a bike again, but I needed to get serious training and miles!

So, I joined a Cycling team/group. The first group ride I joined was with about 12 other cyclists who all had the same jersey on and seemingly top of the line bikes. 

It was like try-outs for a team of one. It was the first day of summer camp when you knew no one, except everyone knew each other.  I had no jersey and didn’t know how to ride in groups. But, I faced the fear and did it anyway. I was an athlete, so it all came back to me. But, this cycle repeated itself several times with different cycling groups. I got a little better during every ride and closer to my goal and just like summer camp or a new team, eventually made friends. 

Face The Fear and Do It Anyways!

It wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows. I was taught some mental toughness lessons along the way. I got dropped from a ride twice and had a bad crash during one of my 100 mile rides, but always kept the goal in mind of the Ironman. 

By the time of the Ironman race, I had logged over 1400 miles. 

Check out the article by NYC Running Mama  about lessons learned from her ironman Journey(i.e., there is no need to fear the unknown). 

Enjoy The Journey

Everyday was a training day and I took the attitude that there was NO tomorrow.  So, my goal was not only the miles and the workout and the challenge, but it was also a mental toughness lesson about focus. 

I made it a point in training to focus on the moment and to focus only on this workout. This was my strategy to enjoy the journey. I got to ride all over Indiana and run crazy miles on the trail and see different places that I wouldn’t have without this race. 

More importantly, I got to meet and train with different people and became friends with these individuals! They helped so much with various parts of preparation. People and relationships are all part of the journey and has nothing at all to do with the destination. 

This skill of focusing on the moment translated directly into the Ironman race itself! I could only focus on just this mile!  I didn’t become all-consumed with trying to finish. I was just focused on making it to the next aid station. 

Check out this article by Will Turner on his lessons learned from his ironman.(i.e. Big goals are usually more daunting than you expect. )

Stop and Help Others

We live in an overly-sensitive, easily-offended, anonymous hating, and self-congratulating, world.


We can also live in a world where we are trying to create a better us and a better you! 

It depends upon on attitude, outlook, and actions, which reality we create. 

I wrote the book NO ONE Gets There ALONE because a stranger stopped his own race during a 1/2 Ironman to help me, an idiot! And that Hinge moment made all of the difference in my life. 

I went into this ironman race with a lesson already qued up. It was “who are you going to help?” I had no idea who is was going to be of course, but it presented itself during the bike when a guy had a flat tire and I didn’t hesitate for a second.

I stopped! 

I also was able to pray with a guy before the race even began while we were waiting to go to the swim corral. He had some serious anxiety and was a believer, so I shared with him my only go to! Pray and if that doesn’t work, pray again!

There’s Always A Second Wind

During the Ironman, the race really starts when it comes to the run. My first several miles were actually okay. But, like in life, things go bad and I started to have stomach cramps around mile 10. By mile 13, I wasn’t feeling good at all and started to get the chills and feel cold.

I saw this movie before at my previous races.

So, when I threw up on the course at mile 16, it was actually a relief. I felt better and was able to get moving. Except, I hadn’t eaten in a few hours and I didn’t want to eat, thus I had little energy.

Our second wind in life is always right around the next corner!  

I got my second wind at mile 21-22. I was able to get a steady clip going and ran with another mate, named Greg Sinche, who suffered from a stroke at age 4. We ran the last few miles together and I finished the race like I was running a 5k. 

I believe when we are at our best and others are doing the same, then it’s the easiest time to love on each other more. 

My times?

swim time= 1:21

Bike Time = 6:33

Run time = 5:45

Total 13:58

Even after all the vomiting, I was able to get sub 14 hours, which was one of my goals. 

dr rob bell

Dr. Rob Bell is a Sport Psychology Coach. His company DRB & associates is based in Indianapolis.  Some clients have included: Indy Eleven, University of Notre Dame, Marriott, and Walgreens. Check out all the books.   

Please check out the podcast 15 Minutes of Mental Toughness as we interview expert athletes and  coaches about Mental Strength and their Hinge Moment.

Two Simple Ways To Get Off Of The Struggle Bus

We ALL struggle! But, we all don’t have to ride the struggle bus.

No one wants to be on the that bus, where we repeatedly keep messing up, quitting, not following through, or letting others down.

The struggle bus’s only destination is to the pity party, where no one shows up, but YOU!

Here’s Three Simple Ways to Get Off Of The Struggle Bus

1) I immensely respect David Goggins. He’s an ultra-freak endurance athlete and the epitome of mental toughness. No matter what, he just keeps moving forward. He’ll walk right past the struggle bus!

David Goggins was asked at a conference “how do you keep going through your extreme races?”

He answered “what-if.” He starts to ask “what-if I can pull this off?” “what-if I can keep going and overcome?”


I’ve always said “what-if” never happened. Too often we ask ourselves “what-if” and there isn’t an answer because we are focused on the past and NOT the future.

Most of the time when we ask “what-if”, we are trying to re-create our own past. And it’s fantasy.

Google “what-if never happened” and see what pops up. Hundreds of scenarios that simply didn’t happen and the possible outcomes from these hypothetical events. (i.e. what-if 9/11 didn’t happen? OR what-if we caught that touchdown?)

But Goggin’s strategy of “what-if” is focused on the future!!

James Altucher asks us to wake up asking the questions of “what-if.” He states- When you start with “What if?” you start with questions instead of answers.

2) Jesse Itzler, who actually had Goggins move in with him for a month (Read: Living With A Seal) has a similar strategy.

He tells himself “remember tomorrow!”

Remember tomorrow how you’ll feel if you give up and stop? Remember tomorrow if you don’t finish and push-through!

Remember Tomorrow!

Both of these mantras are focused on the future and who we want to become!

3) One of my favorite lines from the Rocky Movies (and there are a ton) is from Rocky III. Apollo Creed is training Rocky in this movie and while Rocky is dealing with the typical battle against himself, Apollo drops some wicked knowledge on him.

There Is NO Tomorrow

So true, because if we approach everyday like it is our last, then we leave nothing to chance and seize this day and this moment for all it is worth…

Repeat any of these mantras to yourself when struggling and need to get off of that bus!

Dr. Rob Bell is a Sport Psychology Coach. His company DRB & associates is based in Indianapolis.  Some clients have included: Indy Eleven, University of Notre Dame, Marriott, and Walgreens. Check out all the books on Mental Toughness.  Please check out the podcast 15 Minutes of Mental Toughness as we interview expert athletes and  coaches about Mental Toughness and their Hinge Moment.

dig deep and overcome

Three Tested Ways to Dig Deep And Overcome

Every single morning when I wake, an awful thing happens. The very first voice is an attack on myself and it says “you’re not running/swimming/biking this morning!” 

The very first voice of the day. 

Do you ever have that type of negative voice pop up? 

Early on in life, before mental toughness, that negative voice won. It was a wide path that led to hard drinking!

Nowadays, I mostly win this battle, because my routine and plan and goals of an Ironman, but it’s still there nonetheless. We can’t magically get rid of the adversity, struggle, or hardships. If you want to change your situation, we have to dig deep and overcome!

Here’s three tested ways to dig deep and overcome. 

1. Accept it and move on!

I was at a middle school dance when I finally summoned up the courage to ask this older 8th grader to dance. We’ve all had those tense moments!

Besides, I was told early on in life that the worse answer you can get is “NO.”

That is BS!

See, when I finally walked over and asked her to dance, she said something like “oh that’s sweet, let me get back to you.” Maybe she even patted me on the back or head, I can’t recall. 

Well, I scurried back to my spot at the gym and eagerly awaited my dance. I was excited, because I had heard a “yes” NOT an “I’ll think it over.”  But, I was stuck inside of my own head. I couldn’t ask anyone else and maybe, just maybe, she really did want to dance.

Then, after a few more slow songs, it was evidently clear that it was not going to happen. Then, the dance was over.

I learned “let me think it over ” is the worst answer I can get. A NO would have been more painful at the beginning, but we can accept it and move on.

Acceptance is the key to all of our problems. 

I was fired by my professional golfer weeks after spending the entire week at The Masters. It tore me up, because I was fired after I did a good job! I was embarrassed and heartsick. It took me months to get over actually. 

During that time, I didn’t progress, I got worse because I never accepted it and moved on. 

When we let go of it, it lets go of us!

We have to let go of the anger, resentments, and other people’s expectations. 

Spoiler alert: Bad stuff is going to happen, life is unfair. So, can you accept it and move on, or do you stay bitter and not get better. 

2. Do what is hard and life becomes easier. Do what is easy, and life stays hard. 

Our mind has one job, to keep us safe and out of pain.

It’s one reason why the negative voice in our head exists. It’s not focused on making you better, it just wants the path of least resistance! 

We all seek comfort in life. The scene of relaxing on a beach with an umbrella drink is glamorized, more so than showing someone chopping wood. It’s more comfortable and relaxing to be on the beach. 

But, when we ALWAYS seek comfort, it actually makes life hard.

We have to seek ways to push ourselves in all areas of our life.  Check out our article on 4 reminders to build mental toughness 

The best way is to push yourself in all areas by incorporating the JUST ONE MORE strategy. 

3. When it’s all said and done, more is said than done! 

EVERYTHING in life is easier said than done.

It’s easier to sit and watch TV than it is to exercise.

It is easier to go for a jog than it is to do wind sprints.

It’s easier to practice than it is to compete.

It is easier to NOT push ourselves than it is to push it. It’s simply easier to go through the motions.

Jon Morrow is a quadriplegic, and one of the most successful bloggers on the planet. He had to overcome massive challenges. Speech recognition software has enabled him to write articles read by more than 5 million people. He’s become a multi-millionaire, but more importantly has helped thousands of people dig deep and overcome themselves! Here is the article by Jon I recommend  7 Life Lessons From A Guy Who can’t Move Anything But His Face!  His toughness and ability to persevere has stemmed from living out his beliefs, his actions!

We All have an ACE card up our sleeve- A.C.E.- Action Changes Everything!

James Lawrence (The Iron Cowboy) Summed up perfectly in this 30 second clip from his documentary about 50 Ironmans in 50 states in 50 days. 


Dr. Rob Bell Mental Toughness

Dr. Rob Bell is a Sport Psychology Coach. His company DRB & associates is based in Indianapolis.  Some clients have included: Indy Eleven, University of Notre Dame, Marriott, and Walgreens. Check out all the books on Mental Toughness.  Please check out the podcast 15 Minutes of Mental Toughness as we interview expert athletes and  coaches about Mental Toughness and their Hinge Moment.


mental toughness is really about

Mental Toughness Is Really About This…

I recently caddied an LPGA event for Maddie Sheils. She’s such a great person and golfer. It was fun!  I’ve caddied over twenty tour events and a handful of PGA events for my players, but it was my first on the ladies tour.

I re-learned that Mental Toughness is really about this one thing.

Now, on the men’s tour, there are a few golfers who get the attention of their fellow peers because really bomb it off the tee. But, there are 109 players on tour who average over 300 yards. So, the discrepancy isn’t too significant.

However, On the LPGA, the average driving distance is about 255 yards, so there’s a handful that “send it” off the tee about 270 and 280. The difference between 255 and 280 is massive. It’s a different game altogether.

Here’s my point! 

Mental Toughness is really about how we respond to adversity.

So when a professional player who is top 10 in driving distance and can play well around the greens stumbles after playing really well, one thing becomes glaring. When they made mistakes during the tournament, they could not rebound or bounce back. They did not respond well to adversity and they finished way worse than they should have.

In our own lives, bad stuff is going to happen! We are going to have bad breaks, we are going to mess up, make mistakes, get upset, get down, frustrated. It’s not a matter of IF, but WHEN these will happen.

But, this isn’t some fall down 8, get up 9 cliche’ or when life hands you lemons make lemonade cute saying. This type of mental toughness is not about a grand big picture of life where you can assess what’s working and what’s not, cost/benefit analysis, bring in a consultant type of adversity. There’s not a lot of reflection time when it comes to having this type of mental toughness.

Adversity is sneaky!

This type of adversity and struggle is going to happen during the course of a match, meet, game, and life. It’ll occur very quick, and there are emotions and expectations involved.

But, I believe that the better we get at overcoming adversity during the difficult times, it will also help us during the good times. 

The Importance of Mental Toughness comes down to these Hinge Moments! 

Here’s Three Ways To Respond Positively to Adversity


Some of us can witness our emotional reaction to stress and bad stuff. Many of us can not see the build up and slowly it stacks up like pancakes before toppling over. We have to understand and know our major adversity triggers. Mine is simply misplacing and losing things. I hate it and I allow it to consume me sometimes. 

Hope is NOT a Strategy  

Luke Tyburski completed one of the most amazing physical feats ever, called the ultimate triathlon. He talked about it on my podcast and you can listen to it here.  He actually prepared for this challenge by imagining everything that could go wrong and how he was going to respond to it. So, when the inevitable did occur, he already had a plan!  People think that imagining what can go wrong is bad. Yes, we should visualize the good outcomes, but we also need to know how we will respond to adversity. What will be our response? 

Have a Plan

So, here’s a true cliche’, you didn’t plan to fail, you just failed to plan. What is your strategy to overcome the minor setbacks and inconveniences? Do we need to have a mantra, or a physical refocus cue? Is gratitude in the midst of the struggle the answer? Feel free to email me how you do it!

Find A Way

The battle is me vs. me.

It’s against ourselves and the difficult part is that we know everything about our opponent. It’s why we often talk so negative to ourselves.

Sarah Piampiano developed her mental toughness by challenging herself everyday in her preparation so when she needed to dig deep, the reservoir of mental toughness was there for her. 

We have to be able to problem solve and fight, find a way, and compete, period!  The more we subject ourselves to situations where we have to be tough minded, then just like Sarah, it’ll be there when we need it.

Dr. Rob Bell Mental Toughness

Dr. Rob Bell is a Sport Psychology Coach. His company DRB & associates is based in Indianapolis.  Some clients have included: Indy Eleven, University of Notre Dame, Marriott, and Walgreens. Check out all the books on Mental Toughness.  Please check out the podcast 15 Minutes of Mental Toughness as we interview expert athletes and  coaches about Mental Toughness and their Hinge Moment.

5 Quality Ways To Make Sure Young Athletes Get Sleep

Sleep is the greatest natural performance enhancer.

Yet, the need to ensure young athletes get sleep is commonly overlooked by parents, coaches and the individuals themselves.

Getting sufficient shuteye is hugely important for a variety of reasons.

First, sleep is when athletes actually learn new skills. Sure they spend hours on the pitch running drills, or in the batting cage swinging away, but it’s actually during sleep that these motor skills are consolidated by the brain and hardwired in a young athlete. It’s not practice that makes perfect.

It’s practice plus sleep.

Second, sleep is when the body repairs, replenishes, and reinforces itself. Hours spent in the gym are rendered useless and can, in fact, be harmful if they’re not followed by sufficient rest. It’s during deep sleep that torn muscle fibers are rebuilt and damaged tissue is repaired and strengthened. It’s sleep that makes a young athlete strong.

Knowing a young athlete should be sleeping more, and actually getting them to do so, are two very different things however. Today’s screen-obsessed youth are getting less sleep than ever.  

Don’t despair – below are five ways that could improve the odds of junior getting sleep.

  1. Don’t schedule workouts too close to bedtime

The timing and intensity of that exercise can have an impact on how quickly and how soundly sleep then follows. Working out late in the evening works for some but for many others it can lead to spikes in adrenaline that leave them feeling a little wired in bed.

Plus, too much exercise too close to bedtime can lead to something known as sleep twitching. This is an annoying and sometimes unpleasant phenomenon where the muscles jerk uncontrollably, causing arms or legs to kick and flail. While not dangerous (unless you get hit by a flailing limb), it’s safe to say the condition tends to wake everyone in the bed up.

  1. Put screens in the sin bin before bed

A big problem for all of us and especially the youth of today, is overstimulation.

The world is simply too connected and too interactive. Thanks to smartphones and omnipresent wireless internet, nowhere is free from distraction, including our bedrooms.

The consequence of this is that while we may feel tired, when we actually lay our head upon the pillow our mind is racing. Instead of falling asleep quickly we spend an hour or so tossing and turning… and checking our phone every 5 minutes. Before they know it, it’s midnight. 

The solution is to encourage young athletes to introduce a pre-bed wind-down time; this involves powering down all screens the hour before bed. Including smartphones.

Especially smartphones actually, as they’re the most distracting and can get most in the way of a better sleep. So keep phones out of the room, give them a red card and confine them to the ‘sin bin’ (i.e. the living room), not to be released until morning. If there’s any resistance to this it might be time to sit the athlete down and give them a talk about the sacrifice it takes to be successful.

  1. Encourage regularity

Bedtimes are not just for kids. Bedtimes are for everyone, especially to make sure young athletes get sleep . The human body adores routine. Regularity of action allows the brain to build associations and take shortcuts. If a young athlete goes to bed and rises at the approximately the same time each day, the brain will quickly learn to anticipate sleep approaching and become prepared for it.

A regular bedtime will also allow athletes to adopt healthier routines across the day, whether they relate to training times or eating schedules. Athletic performance is all about managing energy levels and regularity is essential for this.

  1. Get them to cool off before bed

One of the best ways to encourage healthy sleep is to cool down before bed. Studies have found that to initiate sleep the brain actually has to drop 2-3 degrees in temperature. This tends to happen naturally as we get drowsier but there are ways to accelerate the process.

Keeping their room cool is an obvious place to start. 

An ice cold shower also works very well.  When you step out of the shower after 1 minute of cold water, a massive thermal dump occurs, dropping the body temperature rapidly and making you sleepy, fast. After you shake off the cold! 

  1. Provide a calm environment

Stress is the enemy of sleep. Worrying too much about the big game or race in the morning will lead to broken sleep and poor performance. Ironically the act of worrying too much, actually makes the thing they are worried about more likely to occur.

That’s why mental toughness preparation is so important. Parents, coaches, friends and teammates have a big role to play here. If the role models in a young athletes life are calm, level-headed and don’t take things too seriously, then this tranquility will be instilled in the athlete themselves. With a relaxed support base around them, a young athlete is less likely to become stressed. As a result, they will sleep better and be more likely to perform.

 Here’s the importance that young athletes get sleep AND five ways to encourage it. Remember sporting success often comes down to fractions, the difference between a winners medal and finishing second can often be something as simple as a good night’s sleep.

About The Author

sleep advisorHi all, I’m Sarah. I absolutely love sleep. If I don’t get my doctor-recommended eight hours a night I’m a wreck the following day. I adore sleep so much that I’ve made it my job. When I’m not tucked up in bed I am reading the latest research and writing for the Sleep Advisor. My colleagues and I firmly believe that the world would be a happy, healthier place, if we all got a little bit more shuteye!


athletes get sleep

Why I Am Doing an Ironman

Why I Am Doing An Ironman

“Your why has to make you cry, if it doesn’t, it’s not your why.” 

I was an utter screw-up in high-school. 

I got arrested and kicked-off the soccer team the night before my senior season began.

I was suspended from school for five days the day my senior baseball season began. I was called to the principals office and was actually in my uniform heading up to the field and informed of the punishment. 

Going into college, it got worse.

I fell off an 80-foot cliff during the first few weeks of starting college.

Nearing the end of my freshman year of college, I was involved in a head-on drunk driving accident. Thank goodness I was the only one that was injured!

Yeah. I know. 

All of the opportunities that I had worked for years prior, vanished. 

Could you imagine being my parents during all of that? 

Pain, regret, shame, anger, disappointment were emotions that became a consistent cloud over my soul wherever I went. 

Then, I was accepted into graduate school at Temple University and received an internship. I thought that they must have had the wrong guy.

The book I read before grad school began was- It’s Not About The Bike, by Lance Armstrong. I get the hate he brought on himself, but I digress.

There was a powerful quote in that book that read “If you ever get a second chance at life, you have to go all the way!” 

It became a mantra and I knew that although I wasted my talent in the past, I was still blessed with an opportunity.  I knew what I wanted to do and become, I wasn’t going to blow it. 

All the lessons that I learned in sports still applied-dedication, focus, commitment, and keep moving forward. 

My mess would become my message! 

I read everything! I ran marathons! I immersed myself into my field of sport psychology and mental toughness. 

I was still haunted though.

Yes, I was thankful and re-dedicated, but I was driven by my failures and fear of making sure I didn’t mess up again!

That motivation was driven by a hate for self that gets channeled in positive outlets, but a residue of anger and a belief of not being good enough remained.

Making your test your testimony is painful. It means being able to see how your own experience can benefit others. It means first being vulnerable, and who likes that?

So, the only way I’ve been able to navigate life without that cloud is to try and be of use to others. That’s why I’m doing an Ironman. 

I ran an Ultra in May and dedicated it to Izzy. #runforizzy.

My next adventure is a full Ironman Triathlon.

Ironman Maryland. September 29th…

2.4 mile swim, 112 mile bike, 26.2 run…

Here’s my why…

Josh Fugate.

Josh just graduated high-school in May and in June he merely went down a slide head first. He fractured his c-5 vertebrae and was paralyzed from the chest down….
josh fugate

Boom, Hinge moment.

He’s a great kid! That should have been me.

So, what can I do? how can I help?

That’s why I am doing the Ironman Maryland.

If you feel moved to support Josh’s recovery, then by all means. If there is someone else you can help in life, then do that instead.

Be The Hinge for others…

#JoshsJourney #YouveGotThis