In this bi-weekly column 'ONE Moment with Rich Franklin', ONE Fighting Championship (ONE FC)'s Vice President (VP) talks about his life lessons through the sport of mixed martial arts (MMA). The 'Ace' is a former World Middleweight Champion with a professional record of 29-7.This week, he shares Part 2 of how to manage stress.
As I said before, managing stress comes down to a simple two-step process.
I previously wrote about focusing on your circle of control.
Frequently though, consciously focusing on the things you can control still leads to the 'what if...what if...what if' scenario.
We operate in either the past, the present or the future. Our memories and experiences are the building blocks of who we are and the very fibers of our personality.
However, dwelling on past mistakes or living in regret is not productive. Deal with those issues and release them, but know this will likely not be an overnight process.
Remember the circle of control...the past is no longer in that circle, and no amount of thought or action can change it.
When I schedule a fight, I am clearly thinking about an event in the future and I give myself eight to 10 weeks to prepare for my opponent.
He is typically the first person on my mind in the morning and the last person on my mind before I fall asleep.
I think about him while I am eating, training or even catch myself drifting into thought about him during my free time.
The old adage says, "The journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step."
Once I am focused on future events that are in my circle of control, I begin to develop the game plan and the contingency plan I wrote about in the first part of this article.
It is useless to constantly give thought to the finish line of my 1,000-mile journey.
Although I am planning for a future event, my focus needs to shift to the daily execution of the game plan.
My coaches design the drills I need to execute that plan. I do not bother focusing on the first week or even the first day.
I walk into the mat for the first practice, begin with the first drill and focus on the first rep. After that rep, I focus on the second, then the third and so on.
I make sure I execute each rep with a standard of excellence, never taking my attention away from the rep I am about to complete.
As my boxing coach often said, "Don't fight the fight before the fight." I don't have time to worry about the "what if" obstacles in my future.
I find more often than not, many of those scenarios I conjure in my head rarely come to fruition.
Once you are inside your circle of control, operating in "the now" will manage your stress.