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The Sensei Of Human Performance

By October 5, 2020January 16th, 2024No Comments
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Episode #550



How do world-class athletes, artists and top business leaders organize their inner lives to expand the edges of their potential?

What are the frameworks and key mental skills needed to excel in those intense, all or nothing make-it-or break it moments?

How do change-makers find peace, grounding, and even joy in the most intensely stressful, critical moments of their lives and careers?

There is no human more well-suited to fielding these questions than world-renown high performance psychologist Dr. Michael Gervais — returning for his 4th appearance on the podcast.

A globally recognized authority on optimal human performance, Dr. Gervais has spent the last twenty years working in the trenches of consequential, high-stakes environments, where there is no luxury for mistakes, hesitation, or failure to respond. His clientele includes the NFL’s Seattle Seahawks, countless Olympic medalists, MVPs from every major sport, world record holders, internationally acclaimed music artists, and corporate leaders.

In addition, Dr. Gervais is the host of the popular Finding Masterypodcast. Alongside NFL coach Pete Carroll he founded Compete To Create, an online and live master class for the mind, and together they authored the recently released Audible Original also entitled Compete To Create — a must-listen for anyone interested in raising the bar on their own potential.

My purpose is to help people live in the present moment more often. That’s it. That’s my purpose in life.


There’s a reason he’s been featured by NBC, ABC, FOX, CNN, ESPN, NFL Network, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Outside Magazine, WIRED, ESPN Magazine, the Harvard Business Review and more:

Dr. Gervais is the sensei of human performance optimization.

Unlike our previous episodes, today’s exchange is not about elite athletic performance. Nor is it about the demands of jumping out of a plane without a parachute. In fact, it’s not really about sport at all.

Instead, this is a conversation about how best to navigate the cataclysmic shit show we call 2020 — and the years of political, pandemic and planetary turmoil likely to follow.

There are no lifehacks to fundamental growth.

– DR Michael Gervais

It’s about understanding trauma. Accepting pain. Working through it. And how suffering is integral to the human experience.

It’s about the difference between purpose and vision. The role of sport in a world that’s closed for business. And the importance of optimism in dark times.

If you’re new to the show, you’re in for a treat. I adore this man. So prepare to fall in love.

The visually inclined can watch our exchange on YouTube. And as always, the podcast streams wild and free on Apple Podcasts and Spotify.

If you enjoy today’s conversation, you might also dig Michael interviewing me in the most recent Finding Mastery episode (FM #244). And you can mine his three previous appearances on the RRP (episodes 120, 252, and 366).

It’s hard being a human in 2020. Don’t underestimate the circumstances — but know there is a light out there.

Let’s find it together.

Peace + Plants,

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Thanks to Jason Camiolo for production, audio engineering and show notes; Blake Curtis for video, editing and graphics; portraits by Ali Rogers; and theme music by Tyler Piatt. Trapper Piatt & Hari Mathis.

*Disclosure: Books and products denoted with an asterisk are hyperlinked to an affiliate program. We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites.