Mental Game

mental game kenny rogers the gambler

Three Mental Game Lessons From Kenny Rogers “The Gambler”

The Gambler is such a good tune and it has three lessons about how we can apply the mental game. It’s amazing to believe that the writer of this song, Don Schiltz shopped this song around for two years before it was picked up.

Patience & Persistence…

Johnny Cash put it on his own album, but it was Kenny Rogers who made this a mainstream, signature song! The chorus of this iconic song is the best ever when sung by ALL in the room. 

As a refresher, The Gambler is a tune about meeting a man on a train that is “bound for nowhere.”  

He speaks truth into the narrator’s life by asking for a drink of his whiskey and then providing “some advice.”

The first mental game lesson by Kenny Rogers “The Gambler.” He said, “If you’re gonna play the game, boy you gotta learn to play it right.” 

One of the best compliments I heard about a baseball team I worked with was “they play the game the right way.”  This opposing coach meant that they were a poised team that ran on and off the field, ran out ground balls to first base, backed-up one another, and held their own dugout in order. 

An amateur often does what a professional does but on purpose!

Playing the game the “right way” however, often just means playing  “my way”.  If you grew up playing baseball in the Dominican Republic, you flipped the bat after home-runs because it’s the culture of the sport. But, in the United States, bat flips are seen as showing up the pitcher. Playing street basketball at The Rucker Park in New York City is an entirely different game than inside a country-side gym. Advice from successful others is often about how they play the game. 

“Learning to play the game the right way” means being able to adapt and overcome and assimilate where needed into the culture. 

The second mental game lesson from Kenny Rogers “The Gambler” is “You never count your money When you’re sittin’ at the table.” 

The mental game can be boiled down to the essence of being able to focus on the process rather than the results. 

The process is even more important than the product. 

If we start counting our money, we are focused on the result rather than focusing on the next hand, which is the most important. Also, if we are counting our money while we are still playing, then it may seriously affect our play. We now do not want to LOSE the money in front of us, so we alter our style of play because we were focused on the money instead of the game. We will start to play it safe. 

Great players always play the game and NOT the context. 

When we allow results or the outcome to occupy our thoughts, it affects our current state of play. We get away from the process. Kenny Rogers The Gambler, admits in the next line, “there will be time enough for counting when the dealin’ s done.” 

The third mental game lesson “That the secret to survivin’ is knowin’ what to throw away, And knowin’ what to keep.” 

We can’t play every hand in poker. We can’t play every hand in life either. There will be runs of good times and bad times and the mental game lesson here is Discipline. 

Discipline requires self-control and staying committed to your goals and process. Discipline means doing the things you don’t want to do. In poker, if you have a good hand, the difference is being able to know when to fold a good hand that could cost a lot of your bankroll. 

Discipline also means that the person or team that makes the fewest mistakes usually wins! This requires doing the little things correctly and being able to stay within ourselves and simply Play our game.

Stay in our lane. 

Run our race. 

Ol’ Kenny Rogers offers up plenty of mental game lessons in this song, but there are the three strategies that we can use.

And that’s an ace you can keep!

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 mental toughness 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.

art of becoming your best self

art of becoming your best self

The Art of Becoming Your Best Self


It’s kind of like adding lemon juice to milk and have a gulp of it.

Boy, as a kid, I once thought it sounded soooo0000 good and tasty. I wanted to try it. Well, I did and it was the first and last time I drank that stuff. Yuck!

Straight buttermilk, no chaser!

Now, in all fairness, I’ve learned that I most likely was not even drinking true buttermilk. I was drinking the knock-off, storebought version which is skim milk and cultures added to it.  So, I’ve only drunk commercial buttermilk. 

True buttermilk is made from real butter. It’s the liquid (whey) that forms from the churning of the butter. 

It is actually a very popular drink in Southeast Asia. Man, those people are mentally tough for drinking that stuff, because I bet fraternities most likely make their pledges consume copious amounts of it.

Heck, even with all the supposed benefits of straight buttermilk, I’m still not rushing out to down it. Now, before you read further, this blog is NOT about drinking buttermilk to build mental toughness, although if you do, let me know. It can’t hurt. 

So, what could buttermilk possibly have with becoming your best self?

Buttermilk is what it is by itself, but when it’s mixed with something else, it frankly makes that dish, the best ever! Buttermilk is the magic ingredient. 

Seriously, what is better than Buttermilk Biscuits and Buttermilk Pancakes and Buttermilk Fried Chicken, Buttermilk Ice-Cream, or Buttermilk ranch dressing, awesome! 

That’s how the art of being your best self occurs!  

By ourselves, in isolation, we make little impact. However, only when we share our own magic with others are we becoming the best version of ourselves. 

We need to just add the buttermilk. 

Talents and Gifts. 

According to the dictionary, a talent is a natural endowment of a person. 

Some of us have abilities that can be seen: cutting hair, detailing cars, landscaping, taking pictures, drawing, playing the piano, or singing. Then there are talents like running, jumping, throwing, comedy, or hitting a golf ball.  

A gift is also a talent, but it is something given willingly without payment. 

The biggest difference between talents and gifts is how they are used.

Talents that are used for the betterment of others become gifts. 

If you look up Quora, there are 95 current answers to “what is the greatest gift one person can give to another.” Seems most people are searching for actionable ways of becoming your best self. 

Many of these answers are love, kindness, time, patience, positivity, compassion, kindness, discernment, and respect. 

When we delve into spirituality, the Bible outlines specific spiritual gifts that include: Leadership, administration, teaching, knowledge, wisdom, prophecy, discernment, and exhortation. 

Everyone has a gift, but some do not utilize it and most do not maximize it. 

If we keep our talent only for ourselves, (which happens easily) then it restricts becoming your best self. Buttermilk by itself is not the best, only when used with others. The secret is that we have to give it away. We have to focus on making others better by using our own talents and turning them into gifts. 

When we focus on others and are of service; we make a difference. 

Focusing on others is by design it is not by default. 

Our default mode is to isolate. Okay, maybe not you, but I sure do. Only when I’m full of confidence, productive, and have exercised do I feel like connecting with others. It’s a lot easier to NOT have to connect with people than it is to build relationships.  

We can be comfortable and happy alone. We do not need to connect. But when we isolate, we lose confidence and we lose confidence when we isolate. Only mushrooms grow in the dark and who likes those? 

And in today’s world, sadly, it’s easy to isolate. But we do not become our best self without others.

NO ONE Gets There ALONE. 

When we use are using our gift, we are truly alive!

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 mental toughness 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 challenge

What Can You Learn From This Mental Toughness Challenge?

My son is a great boy, but he has fear, just like we all do. He’ll get afraid of the dark going upstairs, so when he took back his sandwich at Panera because it wasn’t cooked correctly, it was a very proud moment! 

One of my favorite parts of my coaching business is offering the NO ONE Gets There ALONE 30-Days to Mental Toughness. My online coaching isn’t the true joy of one-on-one coaching, but it allows me to help people an experience of getting better.

The 30-day mental toughness challenge only begins at the start of every month and its focus is about creating a Better US and a Better YOU. 

I do not challenge anyone with anything that I haven’t done myself.  But, the only way to build mental toughness is to overcome the adversity in life. We need to get uncomfortable. So, it takes creativity to be able to create situations that challenge ourselves without having to exert some sort of physical challenge. 

Only through discomfort can we grow and realize that our fear was lying to us. No matter what happens in this challenge, I PROMISE THAT YOU WILL NOT DIE! So, it is true that what does not kill you only makes you stronger. 

The following grit challenge below is my personal favorites and I love doing it, but also hate it as well because it makes me uncomfortable. 

The premise is simple: Ask NOT, Want NOT. 

If you want anything in life, we can’t be hindered by the fear of being able to ask for it. A better salary, a nicer home, a sale, a car, or even a relationship! We need to ask for what we want! 

On day 18 on the 30-day Mental Toughness Challenge, my clients receive this: 

Ask for a Discount…

Today, you’ll have to  get to ask a shop that you visit for a discount. (i.e., Home Depot, movie theatre, Starbucks, restaurant, Applebee’s, wherever).

Why do this challenge? 

First, it gets us out of our comfort zone. We get nowhere in life until we get uncomfortable! The reason we may get uncomfortable is the fear of asking for a discount because they may say “no”, or it may make us feel silly or like a cheapskate. However, these are the mental obstacles and head trash that we need to overcome. 

Get over the fear and do it anyway.  Don’t talk yourself out of it.

Step #1
You’ll be better prepared if you have a strategy heading in. It’ll help get over the un-comfortability. 

Ask “Can I have a discount?” 

And be prepared for the odd look and weird retort, “um, why?” 

Here are some strategies for their response- 

“I’m doing a challenge” 
“I just wanted to ask”  OR 
“I come here a lot” move. 
Or simply reply, “I could really use it, I’d appreciate it.” 
“I wanted to see if 10% off was possible, please?” 

Step #2
This mental toughness challenge is not complete until you actually GET the discount. You’ll get to keep asking…So, take it seriously and stay with it until you’re successful. Patience and persistence…

Step #3
Assess and reflect. What did you learn from this mentally tough challenge? What made you most uncomfortable? Why was it a fear and did it go beyond the fear of rejection?  

My colleague Shannon was put to the coals to do this challenge. “It doesn’t count until you get the discount!” So, she went into Best Buy to buy an Apple watch. She asked and the associate said “Let me see if there is an open box.” She got a few hundred dollars off an Apple watch!

Ask NOT Want Not! 

Now, since you got the discount, how did it feel? 

Mental Toughness is how we respond to the adversity we face in life, but we suck at putting ourselves in situations that challenge us mentally. 

If you want to learn more about the 30-Day Mental Toughness Challenge, click here and start at the beginning of the month! 

mental health tips


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 mental toughness 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.

impact of a coach

impact of a coach

The Life-Changing Impact Of A Coach

There is no greater or important person in society than a coach. And while I often state that everyone is an athlete, everyone is also a coach.

In life, we are ALL Nurses and Patients. 

A coach will impact more people in just one year than most people will in their entire lifetime.  We all can remember both our favorite and least favorite coach.

My favorite coach was still my J.V. soccer coach, Rick Lushbaugh who taught me that I didn’t HAVE TO sweat and push myself running up this steep hill in the heat of August with my teammates. NO SIR! He taught me that I GET TO run up this hill. Training is a privilege. 

Remember these impactful coaches that made us believe in how good we could become and sadly, those who also showed us how we did NOT want to do things. 

When things go horribly wrong with people and society, my belief is that the impact of a coach was not evident at the moment. There was no coach to guide them and point out the blind spots in their life.

Everyone needs the life-changing coach! 

A coach is someone who takes you someplace that you want to go. Think of a stagecoach!

Jerry Palmieri received the lifetime achievement award for NFL strength Coaches. He wonderfully represents a select cohort of coaches. He’s won two SuperBowl trophies and retired from the NY Giants. He’s been in strength coaching profession since 1983. 

He gave an excellent reflective, lifetime speech and talked about the things he learned from coaching. It was after he mentioned all of his mentors and proteges in the room that it dawned on me. 

This man has personally coached thousands of athletes and mentored hundreds of other strength coaches. One can safely estimate that the people he deeply impacted and directly changed their lives goes across generations. 

Then, from the number that he directly impacted to the many numbers of people that they themselves impacted gets pretty mind-boggling. 

The trickle-down effect from his coaching has to be in the hundreds of thousands. That’s the impact of a coach! 

So, what type of coach are you?

Check out our original piece inside of JVA-

Everyone is a coach! Knowing yourself is key to being an incredible coach.

We all have insecurities and strengths as people. No one is perfect in all areas of their life and hence there are NO perfect coaches. But the key is: do you as a coach create better people, who in-turn positively impact others? Do you create a better US? 

You may be thinking “of course”, but here’s the difficult rub. Unless we transform our own pain and insecurity in lives, then we will transmit it to others. Usually, those closest to us will feel our own junk. We will project our stuff onto them!

10 Ways for Coaches to Be Mentally Tough

This strange thing about life and performance is that the toughest person to coach is ourselves. I do not think that we were created to coach ourselves. It requires us to seek out and connect with others! We simply can’t coach ourselves in all areas. Now, I don’t need a coach about how to brush my teeth or stay motivated, but I need others in my life to point out my own blind spots. 

Do you facilitate a culture of excellence?  Because if your presence doesn’t make an impact, then sadly, your absence won’t make a difference.

Lou Holtz stated that we are trying to create a culture where you are missed when you are absent. 

No matter who you are, someone looks up to you and watches your actions. You make an impact even though we can’t always know the significance.

As coaches, we plant trees that we will never see.

We plant trees whose shade other people will enjoy. If we are fortunate enough we will see the gravity of our coaching, years later, seeing who they developed into as people. 

So, the question is will you be that Hinge person in someone’s life? Will you represent the impact of a coach and be the person that they look back and say“you” made the biggest difference in who they became? 

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 mental toughness 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.

virtual races

virtual races

Why You Should RUN AWAY From Virtual Races

Virtual competitions have popped up like dandelions in recent years because these companies have found creative ways to simply separate you from your money. 

Sorry, but virtual race companies trick you into thinking you’ve accomplished something when it’s really all about the bling. Can you even Google VR races and see anything that does not have to do with the finisher medal or bling? Seriously, Disney has the best finisher medals for their fake races, which is why people are willing to spend tons of money. 

We’ve become a participation medal society, obsessed with making sure everyone sees the medal we’ve earned. You SHOULD be proud of entering and completing that REAL race! You put yourself out there and did it.

But, please keep those virtual races medals in your sock drawer.

 Why running a REAL race will always be the best option.

First, you have to sign-up.

But signing up actually keeps many people from running a race, to begin with.

There is fear and apprehension to signing up. It takes commitment and guts to “put yourself out there and race.” Signing up forces you to deal with your own head trash and overcome the obstacles that you’ve created for yourself. Dealing with adversity is how you build your mental toughness. 

Signing-up is how you crush racing and how you crush life,  Once you sign-up for a real race, your mentality changes, and you’ll train and prepare. Heck, we prepare and train more than we actually play and perform. Signing up and doing a real race is more about who you become on this journey rather than what you achieve. 

Only YOU know the obstacles you must face: fear of finishing, a certain time, people looking at your body, the nervousness of simply doing it, not having a support system in place, or not having a big enough “why”? Simply put, you need to turn your excuses into your reasons why! 

Now, if you decide that these mental blocks about what others think are too big for you to overcome, then fine, be done with it. Don’t race! I’m not shouting that everyone must race. Now, your life becomes exponentially better when you face your fears, it’s totally your choice. 

But, DO NOT acquiesce into signing up for a virtual race instead!

This is not how you win the battle over your own mind! The excuse why you didn’t sign-up for a real race will still be present later on, and it’ll grow actually because you didn’t face it. If you don’t want to race, then don’t, but if you do and can’t muster the courage right now, then train and look at another real race in the future! 

Second, you can’t google a real experience!

Running a real race is an experience that includes the unease the night before while laying out your race kit. The early morning wake-up call and brisk cold air, and having to run to use the bathroom before the start. The nerves, the jitters, and excitement is what LIFE is all about! You don’t have to experience those feelings, you GET TO! You get to overcome and face your fear and do it anyways. 

Third, races bring out the BEST in people.

The easiest place in society and humanity to love on one another is in an actual race! That’s why #bostonstrong was so meaningful after the cowardice bombings at the Boston Marathon. I guess the virtual race facebook group encourages one another too, but it’s social media, not real likes.  During my Ironman, EVERYONE kept cheering each other on and you could feel the love and support because we were all trying to achieve the same goal! We knew what it took to complete the goal so it naturally brought out the best in people. 

Fourth, Virtual races are simply way too selfish.

It’s all about you! The best part about REAL races is that it’s NOT all about you!

You’ll cheer people on and you allow others to cheer you on. It involves volunteers, coaches, race organizers, and bystanders. It becomes a community, a flash mob of encouragement, where the real race tries to bring out the best in everybody. 

During a local 10k race that had two loops, I passed a really old lady who was grunting through the 5k. It was obvious she was not a runner and was hurting, but she wasn’t going to quit. I stopped and kind of jocked her a bit, and told her to “remember her ‘why’ and that someone was looking up to her!” As I took off, she yelled: “Oh, thank you!” The interesting thing is that she helped me out more than I think I helped her, but it was true, she WAS inspiring someone younger, I guarantee it!  

Now, I get it, you may be thinking, “Rob, why bash and hate on a fit moms club?” They push the strollers and want to enter the virtual race as a group and get fit and some of their money goes to charity and that’s a bad thing? 

Anyone seriously committed to getting fit is a winner in my book because they are putting themselves out there willing to make a change and get better. Fit Mom’s club certainly doesn’t need my permission and I’m not hating on them, as much as I’m put off by the virtual races themselves. 

There was a very successful financial advisor whom I stayed with every year at a PGA event. As I was asking one night about money, he said: “The world will always try to separate you from your money.”

Wow. Que the virtual race! 

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 mental toughness 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.

common youth sports injuries

common youth sports injuries

6 Ways to Prevent Common Youth Sports Injuries

Kids and teens today are playing sports harder and with more intensity than ever before. What used to be a baseball game in the empty lot behind the grocery store played on weekends is now a structured, statewide or even nation-wide competition played year-round.

The more time our kids spend on the playing field, sooner or later, a sports-related injury is bound to happen. Injuries happen, regardless of how physically fit or active your child is, they happen even to the highest paid and best-trained athletes in the world.

Common youth sports injuries include sprains and strains, spondylolysis, tendonitis, ACL tears in the knee just to name a few.

As the founder of Better Health Chiropractic in Wasilla, here is a list of ways you can prevent youth sports injuries before your child ends up at the hospital or in my clinic.

7 Super Prevention Methods

1. Get an Annual Checkup

Is your child is in good enough physical shape to play for another season?  Studies show that a pre-participation physical exam reduces musculoskeletal injuries as well as for spotting any possible problems before kids return to active games. You should not only see your pediatrician for a checkup but visit your local chiropractor as well.

 2. Let Them Rest!

Unfortunately, many parents push their children to play more than one sports game or on more than one team at a time, which leaves them precious little time for school, school work, play time, and rest. A lack of sleep leads to poor performance and, typically, injuries from overuse. Every athlete needs rest to allow the body to repair itself.

3. Use Proper Equipment

Make sure that you have adequate time to buy sizes that fit your child. Knowing in advance what size you will need can help you avoid forcing your child to wear a medium for a few weeks until the size small is back in stock. This is a simple way to prevent common youth sports injuries.

4. Hydration and Warm-Up

When it’s hot and/or humid out, many children end up dehydrated at best or at risk of suffering from heat stroke at worst. Be sure your child has (and understands the importance of) drinking water before, during, and after the game. If you are present, always be on the lookout for signs of heat stroke, such as fainting, nausea, vomiting, and fatigue.

Although most coaches put their team through warm-up routines sometimes this important injury preventing step might get passed over. Stress the importance of warming up before the game. If you can, perhaps practice a few simple warm-up exercises with your child at home so they will know what to do. Toe touches, and jumping jacks are all good examples of stretching and warmup exercises that kids of all ages can do.

5. Stress Proper Technique(s)

Common youth sports injuries occur every year due to a simple lack of following proper technique. Football players should understand how to tackle and Baseball players should know how to throw the ball to avoid elbow injuries, and soccer players should know how to head the ball. Lastly, softball players need to learn how to field the ball to avoid wearing a mask in right field.

6. Recognizing Injuries

Too many children sustain long-term injuries because the symptoms were dismissed as being minor and the child continued to play their chosen game.

Parents- your children may not want to let the team down or they might even be too young to understand that what they are feeling is not normal. Look for signs of possible injuries, such as limping, favoring one arm, or rubbing their knee while they are waiting to be called.

When an Injury Does Occur

Chiropractors treat the entire body, not just the symptoms.

In fact, 31% of NFL teams employ a chiropractor full time and 77% of all teams have referred their players to a chiropractor. You will find chiropractic care is safe and effective for everyone and that your child will feel so much better after a few sessions.

Practice the above prevention methods and keep an eye out for injuries so they can be quickly treated and in the game for many years to come.

About Dr. Brent Wells

Dr. Brent Wells is the founder of Better Health Chiropractic & Physical Rehab, a different type of chiropractic clinic which treats patients the way Dr. Wells would want his family to be treated. Born and raised in Southern California, Dr. Wells received his Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Nevada and his Doctor of Chiropractic Medicine degree from Western States Chiropractic College. He, his wife Coni, and their three children live in and enjoy the great outdoors in Alaska. Dr. Wells volunteers for Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy Foundation and can be found hiking or rollerblading when he isn’t playing his guitar.

motivational differences

motivational differences

The Truth About MOTIVATIONAL DIFFERENCES Between Men And Women In 3 Minutes

He would drive to the gym, drink his caffeine filled pre-workout, listen to death metal, get in the gym, stay aggressive, wouldn’t speak to anyone and train! He’d be motivated by anger and pull from that anger, and leave angry as well.

Angry guy had competed in MMA for the majority of his life but switched into CrossFit.



What we feed thrives, what we starve dies.

There was a buffet line of anger in front of him, but that gets old.  Seriously, who eats at a buffet every meal?

The issue was when he had doubt in the middle of his Crossfit competitions and workouts, he had no other tool to use. 

If you see athletes that are able to harness the anger, they are usually angry toward an outside agent! John McEnroe got mad at the umpires, never himself. 

But the scary part is that anger directed inward equals depression.

He actually felt deep down that he was not good enough and anger was how it came out. I saw it all of the time from guys in the CrossFit gym, so this led me to question: are there motivational differences between men and women?

I had a female client whose approach to the gym APPEARED completely different than the male clients. 

She was a former college cheerleader who started competing in the sport of CrossFit. When she would go to the gym she would overly exert her energy into others, constantly talking, engaging and wanting to catch up.

A social butterfly!

But, she would play the ‘comparison game’ in her head to the other athletes.  She would walk in excited to be there but left defeated, She wanted to improve her self confidence, but she would get “down.”

She didn’t get angry, she got down.

Her attitude outwardly looked different, but she also operated from a standpoint of “I’m not good enough.”

So are the motivational differences between men and women that far off?

These examples both came from a point of “I’m not good enough.”  It’s just that the emotions that they showed outwardly certainly were different.

Angry guy would scream at himself tell himself to not back down where the female client was saying to herself, don’t let everyone else down.

What we feed thrives… Men are often motivated through anger and what it does physically is it reinforces that anger.

What we starve dies… Women are often motivated by self-doubt or the fear that they are not good enough and what that does is reinforce their self-doubt in their head.

The motivational differences are small. Both examples were motivated by negative reinforcement.  The issue is, at the end of the day, when the lights are turned off, the voice in our head is still there telling us that we are not good enough.  Maybe that is through the comparison game or through anger that we didn’t accomplish what we wanted.

How do you go about changing that?

It matters who you think you are when you arrive rather than when you leave. 

We need to know that we are worthy, loveable, and operate from a standpoint that we are good enough. We can’t arrive at the gym needing this to get our self-worth. We have to arrive knowing that we already have self-worth and we just want to challenge ourselves and be the BEST at getting BETTER. 

Chrissy Barron
In 2011, Chrissy Barron discovered CrossFit and since has aimed to be competitive in the sport, qualifying for the American Open as a 63kg lifter in 2016. She currently lives in Atlanta, GA, and trains at CrossFit Identity. Chrissy co-founded Nova 3 Labs. She decided to pursue a Masters Degree in Sports Psychology in 2016 and is set to graduate in August 2018. 
process is more important than the result

process is more important than the result

Here is proof that the process is more important than the result 

Every game ends.

There is only one champion. The winner is often crowned with hardware, while the loser goes numb.   

But the sun rises on the next day, and win or lose, life moves on.  It’s tough to get over that loss. 

I’ve lost plenty, no one texts you during those times. 

Now, winning beats losing! No one is ever going to say it’s better to not win the lottery than it is to win the lottery. So, I’m not taking anything away from the product, but the process is MORE IMPORTANT than the result. 

Here was the keynote address that I gave at the NFL combine illustrating this exact point. 

One of the things that makes me sick is what the media actually does after every championship. It’s frankly disgusting. Before the locker room has even emptied and the stadium has been cleaned up, they end it the same way.

The media instantly focuses on the NEXT season and post idiot headlines like- “Can they repeat?” They cower behind the narrative of “Way too early rankings.” 

Here, they have written numerous stories building up the season and championship game and then when it’s over— nothing. 

It is immediately on to the next thing, the next season.  

I don’t know why I hate it so much, I think because I realize how much suffering goes into an entire life and how much sacrifice is needed. You have to frankly give your life to achieve greatness at the top level and then these crap writers are just onto the next flavor.

I have to remind myself they quit playing in high-school for a reason. 

The University of Virginia showed the greatest team comeback of all time. They went undefeated in the ACC during the 2017-2018 season and won the ACC tournament. Then, they became the first #1 seeded team ever to lose to a #16 seed.

The proof that it’s not about the setback, it’s about the comeback! They won the national championship in 2019! The top picture illustrates my exact point, early favorites to repeat in 2020. 

Tiger Woods staged the best comeback in sports history winning The Masters, 14 years since he previously won it. It’s the best story ever, but the last putt barely even dropped before it’s now- will he NOW break Jack’s record of 18 majors? 


This is just one reason why the process is more important than the result. Even when you are THE BEST IN THE WORLD, it’s not for very long, at all! 

Hall of Fame coach, Joe Gibbs was stopped in his limo hours after winning the Super Bowl and a fan poked his head in and shouted: “we’ve got to get them again, next year!” 

Society wants us to believe that we are our results.

It’s a nasty cycle.

And the expectations about what others think, build back up. People are selfish. They don’t do things TO us, they do things FOR themselves. The masses want to associate with winners because it makes them feel good about themselves. It helps them justify and provide meaning to their own life. Again, winning feels good! 

But, even the best results are temporary and how we feel about ourselves can’t have to do with what others think of us.

If we care too much about what others think, we will be left feeling empty. Sadly, the media wants us to believe that what people think actually matters.

If our identity is not rooted in something larger than our performance, we will continue to chase the result and only be able to use the result to feel good about ourselves. But, it’s not for very long.

proof that the process is more important than the result

Bill Walsh and Chuck Noll experienced depression after winning their numerous super bowls. People have flown home from winning the Gold medal and thought “is that it?” PGA Tour events interview the latest winner and no less than a week later, it’s onto the next tournament. 

After you reach your own goal, how long does that feeling last until it’s “okay, now what?” 

The product is great and take nothing away from the pats on the back, the congratulations, and all the pictures and text messages, but success has a thousand fathers, and failure is an orphan. 

The reason why athletes and coaches suffer from depression after retiring or even winning a championship is that IT’S OVER!

They don’t want it to end!

What every athlete or coach misses after it’s over is the locker room, the bus rides, hanging out with teammates, and the practical jokes on the coach. That’s the process and the journey. 

We are who we are when we are alone, and at some point, every performer is back in the hotel room, alone. Who are you then? 

What the process and mental toughness are all about is overcoming the adversity, the struggle, and setbacks. It’s about being able to look NOT only at what you have achieved (product) but WHO YOU BECAME along the journey (process)

It’s not about the setback, it’s about the comeback!

If something is easy, then how much can you actually enjoy it? 

We can only enjoy that which requires hard work, toil, and suffering. The harder you work for something, the more you enjoy it, and the more focused on the process you HAVE to become.  

The process is more important than the result because we are all in the process business, we are NOT in the results business.

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.

importance of sleep for student-athletes

The Importance of Sleep For Student-Athletes

Overall mental health cannot be achieved without quality sleep.  The importance of sleep for student-athletes is vital to mood stabilization, appetite control, and immune system health. 

Most athletes understand the importance of recovery and rest days for supporting healthy training and seeing progress.

But, let’s face it, Life, stress, studying, friends, study-groups, and socializing all get top priority over sleep. It’s only after tough events and sheer breakdown of emotions or poor performance that sleep then gets addressed. 

You can’t expect strong mental health if you don’t give your body a chance to recover. 

Tearing It Down to Build It Back Up

Muscle is built when the body repairs micro tears created during exercise. The mind also repairs itself from stressors and that is how grit and mental toughness is created. However, this process of repairing and re-building isn’t effective at all when you don’t sleep well.

The body cycles through all of the sleep stages several times throughout the night. Sadly, if your sleep cycle is disrupted or shortened, the release of the vital hormone, HGH, gets interrupted and doesn’t take place. Without the correct amount of HGH, muscle recovery slows down. Whether you’re recovering from a workout or an injury, sleep is essential for your body to repair itself at the optimum pace.

Improving Your Sleep Quality

Healthy recovery isn’t just about the amount of slumber. 

Although, the hours you sleep before midnight count double. 

The importance of sleep for student-athletes is about sleep quality. Frequent waking, difficulty falling asleep, or early waking can all interfere with being rested and recovered. 

Good rest also requires healthy sleep hygiene. Sleep hygiene includes all the habits and behaviors in your life that contribute to the quality of your sleep. Sleep hygiene habits you’ll want to consider include:

  • Devote your bedroom solely to sleep. A home office or gym in your bedroom can make it hard for your brain to shut down at night.
  • A reasonable bedtime: Go to bed on time, and make sure you’re giving yourself enough time in bed to get a full seven to nine hours of sleep. During intensive training periods, you may need even more, as intensely training athletes can benefit from about 10 hours of sleep each night. A consistent schedule can help your body correctly time the release of sleep hormones and make it easier to get to bed on time each night. 

  • Stress relieving bedtime routine: If you have trouble falling asleep, a bedtime routine can be a good way to relieve stress. Meditation, yoga, or reading a book can help your body relax and trigger the release of sleep hormones. The importance of sleep for student-athletes is that the more consistent you are with your bedtime, the easier it is to wind down and fall asleep.

  • Turning off screens early: Electronics can give off a bright blue light that suppresses the release of sleep hormones. The light is confusing for your brain and circadian rhythm, sending a signal that it’s daytime (alert time) even when it’s late at night and you should be sleeping. Shut it off when going to bed. 

When student-athletes make sleep a priority, you’re giving your body the chance it needs to stay strong and mentally healthy. 

Samantha Kent is a researcher for Her favorite writing topic is how getting enough sleep can improve your life. Currently residing in Boise, Idaho, she sleeps in a California King bed, often with a cat on her face.

What is Mental Toughness 

There are way too many definitions of what is psychological strength. And I’m talking published research definitions. It seemed to be such a sexy term, that scholars just ran with creating their own meaning.

But, I am a wash and wear kind of guy, I keep it very simple.

But, it does take a genius to keep it simple. 

I simply continue to use Jim Loehr’s definition. (Performing well under pressure and how we cope with adversity, 1986). 

In my podcast- 15 Minutes of Mental Toughness,

I ask every expert on my show- what is mental toughness to you?  I value how these tough people define strength and more importantly, how they exhibit it in life. SO FAR, I’ve interviewed two different stroke victims, 10 professional athletes, 5 professional strength coaches, two amazing women that ran 383 miles, ultra-endurance athletes,  6 personal development coaches, and 4 successful entrepreneurs. 

Please check out the podcast, subscribe if you will, and leave a review!

Experts define What is Mental Toughness

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.