I first met Ronda Rousey about two years ago.  A good friend of mine Darrin Harvey, later to become her manager, called me and said, “I have a girl I want you to check out. She’s an Olympic Judo medalist.”  When I heard that, I knew that she had to be an elite athlete. I know what it takes to compete and win a medal at the Olympic Games and very few people can do that.  Ronda walked in my office and talked about whom she is and what she wanted to accomplish. She immediately caught my attention. I have trained with several Olympic teams and numerous elite champions and know what it takes to become one. After two training sessions, I called Darrin and told him “Ronda is your new future World Champion in female MMA.”

That was the beginning of an amazing journey.  A dream was born.  After a couple of weeks of training and discussing her future, Ronda asked me and Darrin to help convince her mother to let her go forward with her new career. I was never asked before to do something like this.  We looked at each other and agreed to have lunch. It was on a Wednesday early afternoon when we met Ronda and her mother, Dr. AnnMaria De Mars for lunch in Venice, California.  Dr. AnnMaria is a former Judo World Champion with an extensive background in Judo and knows what it means to start a new sports career.  Ronda just turned 24 years old. Our mission was to convince Ronda’s mom that Ronda had what it takes to become the best in the world in women’s MMA. AnnMaria’s favorite word during lunch was “skeptical.”  She was constantly repeating that she was skeptical about our plan and insisted that Ronda needed to focus more on an academic career. We could not disagree with her because Ronda is a very intelligent girl. AnnMaria wanted nothing but the best for her daughter; however, we knew what we had in Ronda.  We totally believed that Ronda had what it takes to become a World Champion.  It was a very intense meeting. We felt like we were negotiating Ronda’s future.  After an emotional lunch, we ended up asking her mother for one year. We asked for one year to take her to the top of the ladder. We had given ourselves one year for Ronda Rousey to become a world renown mma fighter. That was two years ago. I can proudly call it Mission Accomplished.

I am very fortunate to be part of Ronda Rousey’s amazing journey.  From her first amateur fight to the UFC Championship title, she displayed an impeccable work ethic, discipline, and willpower. For the last two years, I have coached and trained Ronda to develop a high performance mentality.  HPM is a coaching program designed to reach your highest potential using your comfort zone as a platform for growth and success. High Performance Mentality is having a higher level of awareness and taking full responsibility for your performance.

Ronda experienced tough times during this period.  However, these were just obstacles on her way to accomplishing her dream.  I often said to her, “You’re already there.  Picture yourself being on top of the world. Visualize winning the world title.”  Ronda Rousey is one of the best female athletes in the world.  She will continue to be for many years.

All you need to accomplish your goals is hard work and discipline; then everything will become reality. There’s no excuse for not going after your dreams. You don’t have to worry about whether you can handle it because with every new responsibility that is placed upon you, your spirit will grow to match it.  Your capacity will enlarge and your abilities will improve. You must always believe and know that you have the potential. The resources are available. The opportunity is here. The only thing missing has been your decision to go for it. Let Ronda Rousey inspire you to start your journey and make your dream come true.