Updated: Feb 14
Taking a break from his own podcast, and joining in on the conversation is diet and mindset coach and 2x Paralympian - James Owen Roberts!
James stopped by to talk about what it means to have an Athlete Mindset, his personal journey of adversity, and why he has always been more interested in his ability than his disability.
Connect with James
Conversation with James Owen Roberts:
Calla: You were born with some unique circumstances, I guess it's a great way to put it. I would love to hear in your own words, your story and where it really truly begins for you
James Owen Roberts:
Think you've got to go further than that. And I think this is a conversation that I could probably thank the pandemic for, because I probably wouldn't have heard of. I know the situation for me, growing up was challenging adverse, however you want to put it. But it was a question I posed to my mother, I think, late last year, what was it like for the family, to have to deal with a certain amount of uncertainty. And obviously, having a child is difficult as it is, and I wouldn't know that per se myself. But in terms of trying to do what's best for somebody growing up is challenging anyway. So that aloan, having a child with a disability, so I think I've got a send them massive kudos to my mom, and probably my grandmother, my grandmother, was a little bit more doom and gloom than my mom. And I didn't know this until I asked last year. And I shared this with my, my audience on Facebook last year, and it brought people to tears. Like, I've only realized this five minutes ago. So for me, it's, it wasn't that big a deal for my grandmother to kind of go well. Jane, how's he going to survive? Is he going to be in a wheelchair for us? I think that was obviously the worst case scenario. But she never portrayed that, to me growing up at all, like, pretty much. Have you think in a stereotypical British person? That was it? It was like, whatever was under the surface, you wouldn't say to me, so I think for me, it is been instilled probably, one from a genetic point of view, probably one from an environmental factor of copying what I see. I'm a very stubborn person. So if you tell me no, ultimately, I'm going to find a way of finding a yes. Because if you deem it can't be done. I would like to prove the contrary not just because I I want to spite despite you because of it, maybe when I was younger, that was exactly 100% True. But I think as I've got older, and I've got into the in the realms of coaching, is it's trying to showcase to people, there's so many different avenues that you could go down to, if somebody says no to you, it's it comes back to maybe that they are afraid that they can't achieve it. Or I used to have a saying when I was in the athletic realms of this, there's about four different ways you can go for a wall, you can go around it, you can go under it, you can go over it, or the athlete have pretty much go through it. But there is four or five different choices there. Just pick one. Right?
Leanne: What prompted you to ask that question to your grandma and your mom?
James Owen Roberts: I think I was about, gosh, maybe a few months or maybe a couple years old, and my mom was confronted in the street of what have you done to James. I don't know how you try and answer that question of somebody because I would have thought in a same situation, no mother would do that mutilate their own son or daughter. But obviously people have their own judgments, their own perceptions of, of situations. So I thought, who better to ask, because obviously, I know what fit for face value, what it's been like to, for me growing up, I probably thought of nothing of it. And as I've reflected, as I've got older, like, well, people saying to me is adverse, you need to own that because ultimately, if it is adverse to somebody else. Ultimately, it is a challenge. And it's nothing to be ashamed of, I probably was to a certain extent, because, okay, compared to maybe somebody that has acquired a disability, my life to some extent, has been easy, because I don't have anything to compare against. I've kind of hit the ground running because of the position that I've been put upon because of my family have been well, okay, this is the scenario that you've been there or the hand you've been dealt with. So what let's get on with it. I coined it to being kind of thrown into the deep end, you either sink or swim, I chose to swim. But I think to answer your question more specifically than I asked family, because I wanted to know it probably to a greater level as to Okay, what does adversity look like for my family as to? Well, what do you need to do to make obviously my life 10 times easier, maybe 100 times easier? So there's going to be some sacrifices that you've undertaken for me to, to kind of have that mindset of, okay. In an ideal situation, I probably would have liked to have things differently, but that's not the case. Okay. How are we going to deal with this going forward? So that's probably why I've challenged people when they've said, No, that's okay. Because I've got disability. Okay, so what I want to be judged on my ability, let alone so I think it is an old fashioned way of looking at things in terms of looking at people based on their character, their morals, and their ethics. But that's generally how you should you should treat somebody is not based on the color of skin, if they're a man or a woman is the person's good for what they do. And that's the morals that their ethics, and that's generally the person's root core.
Calla: Yeah, we agree. So is there anything surprising that your mom disclose to you when when she was talking to you that really like you hadn't thought about..
James Owen Roberts: Probably my grandmother's perspective on it, because cuz she's being dead now almost 20 years that never came across as - How's James gonna deal with the disability is you're going to be offered, the advancements of technology has come a long way as well. So that's probably helped. But the more visibility of what my grandmother said as well, how was he going to survive? It was like, I think every avenue that I was thrust upon from a sporting sense, it's probably thanks to that woman because my mom was scared of it. I'm probably scared to get my mom to some extent.
Leanne: That's a healthy fear.
Calla: I was going to say that's really relatable.
James Owen Roberts: You don't want to go back to her and say, I haven't put somebody in a position to succeed. I don't know. It's probably something I sit down with mom occasionally and talk about as okay, that perception of fear is it comes down to probably other factors of you don't want to be on the outside looking in. It's as simple as that but I think because I think the maternal thing that she ever wanted was the best for obviously, two daughters and obviously a grandson of she didn't get to unfortunately see that come to fruition. I'm not that religious, but I probably would look up to the skies. Okay, I've, I've materialized everything that you per se put into words, but my mum put into actions Thus, I owe it to them to be able to actually make it a reality. So my mum, 20 years ago, took it upon herself competition, when it finished to go down to the end of the bleachers and to shower over the over the to get attention. I was mortified twenty years ago, but if she hadn't been willing to do that, I know for a fact that I probably wouldn't be sitting with you today. But it's kind of those little little nuggets per se of having that fear of my grandmother, thus, she wasn't going to come away with that from that situation. Having have not done it. Thus, I think when I had my bad days in sport, it's like, well, that's the least I can do is kind of like it or lump it on the bad days. Because my mom did something she wasn't comfortable to do it, she did it. My grandmother probably said things that, honestly, she regretted. But I challenged when I was a teenager, because I didn't agree with them. But it put me in a position to if I didn't agree with something, I would probably maybe challenge it through my actions, not my words, I was probably well, that was one of those athletes will stay under the radar because I didn't want to create any unwanted attention. Thus, I didn't really change a lot of things I did a lot of things through, through through my actions of, okay, if I don't agree with something, I'm going to obviously show my displeasure, or show that I don't agree with it through an action of obviously showing that I'm more than capable. And I'm going to make a statement. Or for pretty much my entire life has been a dream to be a professional athlete. I probably did lose sight of that at times of well, okay, I'm doing something that I am fortunate to, to do. It's not an aspect of I get paid to do this its a luxury, it's like, Well, you're in a very fortunate position to travel the world as I did, visit other countries, to compete. And, okay, the bonus was to be paid to do it. But I think where athletes probably lose sight of that entirely is the it starts to become a job. It's like, oh, I don't like this because I've got to get up at 6am I've got to do something that I no longer enjoy. It's like, well, that's not true. You owe it to yourself, you are to your family. The coaches down the years of the amount of people that have laid the path for you to be successful is not just you, okay, I have to do the work. But as I think my family remind me occasionally, it's not for the parents driving you to the practice and things like that. You don't you don't start turning the wheels. It's Yes, you've got the raw talent. Yes, you you've got if you've got the determination and the will to do it. But you obviously need massive amount of support behind you. But I think what I am alluding to, is they probably had a belief in me before I believe in myself.
Calla: Yeah, that's so true. Um, you said that you always wanted to be a professional athlete and things like that. So what was the first sport where you're like, yes, this I want to know, like, when did you start sports? And what sport was it?
James Owen Roberts: I started relatively late in competitive sport. Well, I started first ball, actually competitively. And a lot of people don't know this was 10, pin bowling. And in the US is huge. So obviously, good collegiate way and then become professional. But the actual rounds of anything in in the realms of Olympic sport was swimming, and I started 11. And if we rewind, rewind back to what I've mentioned, about women going down to enter the bleachers. That coach said, I started too late at 11. It's like, yeah, I don't do and I was 15-16. At the time. It's like, I don't agree with what you're saying.
Leanne: Why four years later, what'd he say? You just started too late. Why would that even be a factor?
James Owen Roberts: It's just it's typically that's one of those sports, you got to start five, six years old.
Leanne: That was a sport that I did as well. I started at the same time as you. I did swim lessons before then, but competitively. I started at 11 as well. And it was considered late, but I just think it's shocking for five years later for a coach to say, "oh, no, you just started too late". Like, at that point,
James Owen Roberts: it is a barrier to some extent. It's making something challenged. Okay. Some people would, would have maybe gone okay, I agree with what that coach said, Okay, I'm going to maybe never make it to the next level. I'm not that type of person.
Leanne: Same. That's why it doesn't make me done.
James Owen Roberts: Okay. Watch me.
Calla: You guys are the through the wall people.
Leanne: Yeah. Head first
James Owen Roberts: If you were to say to me, from a mental perspective, I don't think it can be done. Okay. That's, that's, that's something in terms of a belief or habits that have been underlying that you've learned from somebody else or you you've you've accepted people saying no, no, no. And you kind of okay, maybe they're right. That's slightly different. You can obviously dispel that and you can chip away at it but the physical isn't is not possible because anything physical, it's your mind that's going to give up before your body body can keep going. It's just that you have this survival mechanism that kicks in. Okay, now James, you're doing the wrong thing, Leanne, you're doing the wrong thing. Let's, let's let's hold back now let's not redline it because we're burners of danger, but you can push through that. Okay, I didn't do it all the time. But I think people will ask me, Well, why why do you not still compete at the high level, I don't want to I don't want to put myself physically for those demands anymore. Of I know, my body's capable of doing it. I've had the discussion with my sports areas all the time, I probably should, because that's my body's used to. Thus the only way to get rid of aches and pains and tightness is to exercise. Okay. It's probably taken me now. I've been working for about three, four years. Now. Okay, you're right, I need to probably exercise and it's trying to find a balance between training upwards of probably near 30 hours a week, which pretty much a job to well, there's got to be a balance, I can't do that and have a full time job. Look after other people and have an existence be completely happy because I'm not a robot.
Leanne: That's that's a huge obstacle for a lot of athletes. And I went through it myself is when you do retire from your sport, you lose a huge portion of not just your your day and your time, but who you are and who you identify as I was reading that you spent two years trying to figure out what you wanted to do. Can we talk about that time? Like what was that like for you?
James Owen Roberts: It wasn't pleasant, that's for sure. I loosely say it's not but it pretty much I lost my identity. Yeah. If we've been serious, as that's who I wanted to be. That's who I've ever been, since I maybe five, six years old, up until I retired at 26. we're talking about almost 20 years of of me as individual of people I hung out with. I went to practice I did competitions pretty much my my real life revolved around sport. I don't think people were I didn't prepare myself over time. I know that I in real seriousness, I am a stickler for preparation of being organized. Now, and before that deciding aspects of my life I didn't It's like, Well, okay, let's retire on my cord. And then I got annoyed where I wasn't getting a fanfare about what I see in everybody else retire, getting a nice write up about themselves. And I'm very bitter. I was not a very, very nice person, but I have to take some of responsibility and, and some ownership of, of the blame because I chose to walk and not be pushed, I chose to probably not have the foresight to at least sit down with career advisors. But of that like of pretty much preparing you for labor, Dysport is one aspect. It's not a regret, but it's kind of going well. Why didn't you have the foresight to do your due diligence to prepare, you've done it in the middle in the middle of your career of okay, sport telling you, you need to have a backup plan. One reason I went to went to University of, well, let's do a degree I'm gonna enjoy. And I'm going to get some benefit out of it.
Leanne: Yeah. What degree did you get?
James Owen Roberts: I did sports science.
Leanne: That's what I did.
James Owen Roberts: It was very much something that I was immersed to before I went to the to college because we did biomechanics, we did physiology testing. The only one I wasn't made aware of was psychology. I think psychology was very much in the university. We know 15 years ago and I think once I got into the degree itself, it was like well, what's the most actually useful in here and now it's not physiology. Biomechanics was not really psychology went both ways. So I was able to utilize theory. Okay, let's see if it works in the real world, and use it and practice it on me. And, okay, it's taken me probably know, I graduated in 2010 10 years from now utilize it in the real world for other people as to go, Okay, this is theory, this is your problem, this is the solution this is how you apply. So actually, everybody's got a recording that pretty much January, so New Year's resolutions, everybody has a plan. But they don't have a planner into in terms of how they can execute that. And that's why people will come, come next month, a lot of people are gonna fail because, okay, I had good intentions. I've gone pedal to the metal to certain extent, if it was all about fitness, thus, no one knew you're going to fail, because you can't sustain that long term. Because you're gonna you can't go zero to 100 and not have any consequences. So a lot of people, okay, it's good that you make any change, however you need to write? Or how am I going to do it long term? So okay, How do we sustain it for the next 11 months? That's why I do my clients. Now it's okay, you've got to go. When do you want to achieve it? I'll tell you if it's realistic or not. Because I've been doing it a long time. And I probably could utilize my sporting career as well. Of, if I say something's not, I'm not saying it's not attainable, but it's not realistic to give it that certain limitation on needs to be attained by certain timeframe. So I asked people point blank, and straight to the point, if the goal is not set in stone in terms of, okay, you get ready for a wedding, or you want to get ready for a vacation. There's no time, it needs to be achieved by its limitless. So it could be I don't know, you want to lose 100 pounds, you don't have to do that in six months, you've got the time,
Leanne: And you have to keep that off, too. That's the part that people forget. So it doesn't matter about a timeline as much as the behaviors that become habits, that you can create a life where you can sustain that 100 pound weight loss.
James Owen Roberts: I had a discussion with somebody for market research on they've done another program with another company. And I went if you were to achieve your goal, are you going to be happy? And they said to me, if I achieve the goal, yes. Then to that point, I said, Well, okay, I know your family situation. Does your son make you happy? She said, Yes. They don't, they don't align with what you've just said. Because if a person makes you happy, but if you don't really realize your goal, you're going to be unhappy. Okay, there's a certain synergy, but I think where a lot of people and I'll put myself in, in the space of the fitness industry are at fault. Because we focus on nutrition, we focus on fitness to focus on this for so long. Mindsets blank is slowly catching up. It's no point the person implementing fitness regime under nutrition regime, but they don't work on themselves. Because, okay, you have the aspirations of being an individual. But you're never going to be that person if you don't step into their shoes.
Leanne: I love that. So how how did you become fixated on coaching?
James Owen Roberts: I kind of fell into that. Really? Yeah, well, let's come back to the two years hiatus of my family specifically my mom have been at me for years for going into coaching, and I think this is the back end of my career. Like no, I'm not ready. Because I was of the mentality of if I was talking to a gym back then wow, okay, the person is fat. What's the excuse? I got a disability. I went from grassroots sport to elite sport. I didn't use a disability as an excuse. I didn't use anything at my disposal. So I've been pretty ruthless. I had no no filter, pretty much no empathy for other individuals whatsoever. So I would look at cause and effect of, okay, I can only say that you're fat. I don't know the real reason as to how you got there. I think I think I'm a lot more empathetic now than I was I take into account I want to kind of find the real reasons. Okay. What has been all the baggage so to speak that got you to this point? Well, there's gonna be a lot of it in terms of Historically, it could be anything ciuld be self loathing of I call it myself in the mirror. I've probably gone a step further than that as a coach as I've gone to look at all my insecurities as okay why do I do the things that I do? Why am I unwilling to be uncommunicativewith other people? Why am I quick to lose my temper? Why? Why? If you tell me something I don't want to hear, I'm gonna get annoyed with you.
Leanne: Let's hear about that journey. That sounds like a fun one, I want to go down that path.
James Owen Roberts: Why it was I big, I think it was certainly last year. So it's been a it's a massive, I've made a massive inroad with that, because with the help of my my business coach, and obviously the other coaches I work alongside of, they'll pick apart any limiting beliefs that you've got, so be it. Because of the nature in which sport is as like a tangible from A to B, it's pretty much not difficult as in, it's just a stepping stone to progress. So I would use that in my coaching space, as okay, this person will come to me with x problem, okay, I've got y solution there and people will like you can't do that, James, because people human beings, I'll credit them because I've become a better human being as a result. I wasn't having good conversations with myself. So I would be quick to jump to conclusions. I still do it to some degree, but not not not so much. But I can get myself out of a tight squeeze quite easily. Because in order coaches doing have, be it, they want to specifically touch on a certain point. And I'll be able to kind of go off on a tangent until you forget about the question altogether. But sometimes I won't remember the question either, but sometimes I'll do it, but I'll do it on purpose as well. Okay, I'll let you get a little bit of what you want to hear. But let me kind of go sidetrack and go off somewhere else. But however, when it came to that communication, I think when people presented I like a challenge to be overcome. I like the sound of that. I'm entrigued and I'm willing to, to embrace a little bit of hardship, a bit of a struggle for the greater good of be it any emotional thing that you you find yourself coming up against. Lean into it. So mine happened to be anxiety and I didn't like,I didn't know.
Calla: Nobody does, that's a tough one.
James Owen Roberts: I remember him saying will lean into instead of trying to change your state, or to go off and do something else, so you can kind of to certain extent, forget about it. Okay, I'll lean into it. And then to have a greater understanding of when it comes up of okay, this is what it feels like, of and then I've, I've taken upon myself, I think in the new year of okay, let me learn more as much as I can about human psychology as I can, I'll keep learning. Thus, obviously, when it comes up for the people you've kind of given you've got a toolkit to kind of okay, this is a cut as come up for you. How does it make you feel or what is your immediate reaction to do so be okay for anxiety? I didn't like it, but I talked about this well, what kind of things is it bring up? Okay, and then we've gone in to the last week of my relationships, like I'm quite close with my mom, but my dad is not that close. So he's like, Okay, I know a bit about you and your relationship with your mom. Let's talk about your relationship. It's not fragmented, but it's a weird dynamic because he wasn't there growing up so my relationship is better as an adult and probably was coming up but that coach per se as well how would you like to like to kind of play the dual role of being myself and being like that that was weird though. However
James Owen Roberts: It got it got to the roots as to what am I looking to get from an apology as to why did you leave? Is it Is it wrong that he left under circumstances? No, is it wrong that I did that I did not have two parents. Day in day out. ? I put Yeah, I put originally Yes. When he asked me like well, if you look at
Leanne: It feels wrong to you, it feels like you had been wronged in that situation.
Calla: Yeah, not ideal.
Leanne: I would say yes.
James Owen Roberts: I think Well, I think when he, when he rationally kind of said, well, is it wrong to not have both parents? Not really, because it's only it's only society, societal norms, saying you have to have both parents, okay? I've probably transcended the status quo, because normally, you have a single parent, you're going to turn out rock out bad as a bad, but I haven't done that. So So I think it's trying to challenge that status quo to some extent of okay, maybe from my grandparents generation generation before that, yes. Because you would be, it would be frowned upon and you'd be locked down. I think maybe in the 21st century. I probably could have an argument with somebody over this, but it's not right or wrong. It's just your perspective on that particular situation. But I think as human beings, we look to find any little bit of an issue with ourselves to kind of bring into question our underlying beliefs about ourselves. Be it okay, me not having two parents. That's I'm wrong. Deus. I will always look to either discredit that narrative or prove it right. In every
Calla: Yeah, there's a lot of proving going on. I'm here to tell you, you're enough. I just want to get that, like out there. You more than enough? I feel like I need to say that after that. For sure. Because do you think because of that your mindset is in that constant, like almost like fight mode of proof.
Leanne: I could see Yeah.
James Owen Roberts: And I know people don't see me nodding away. Yes. I'm not something that I've looked to, to improve. Because I think that coaching particularly asked me why I always go into conversation wanting to fight people.
Calla: Yeah, so combative.
Leanne: But I do think though, that that is what propelled your athletic career.
James Owen Roberts: Yeah, it doesn't work. It doesn't, to some extent doesn't serve me now.
Leanne: Not in real life. No. But you said it yourself. You've been working on empathy. You're learning about human psychology, because I know, as a former athlete, I'm a personal trainer. And I have a tough time relating to my clients who do use the excuses who don't do the same. They don't show the same level of give a fuck that I always have about everything and, and to the point where it can be crippling, but I don't understand the giving up early and the using excuses and being okay with that. So it has taken I've been in this for 10 years, it's taken this long to realize human behavior and what's more normal. But I think having a good balance of both is what's gonna get you get you through
James Owen Roberts: Trying to impart some of my wisdom to, to not even a client or anybody that comes to speak to me and to kind of go, Okay, this is I use the person I spoke to last week. He would go Monday to Wednesday, motivated? Thursday, not so much. Friday, you know where I'm going with this Leanne..
Leanne: Peters out, Yeah.
James Owen Roberts: I kind of went well, it's stupid that you're getting back on the horse on Monday. Why don't you get to Thursday and make a conscious choice with yourself. I'm going to consistently keep going. Okay says it's not going to be easy. However, you've got two choices. You either commit to it or you quit. But that's a real conversation you'd have with yourself because that's a black and white conversation. I'm not saying my motivation is perfect. It was far from even even at the highest level. I was in a team sport. So I had other people that could kind of go Go on, James, let's go today, your feeling is today what you're going to show up. And those winter months, those were not fun. And I would obviously reciprocate and obviously when they're not feeling it, okay, let's go, let's go today. So it's accountability. And as soon as that obligation to the team of you're going to show up regardless of how you feel, that's not their reality. So they've got to kind of let be nurtured into this behavior, whereas you and I, okay, this is normal.
Leanne: I would say on the flip side, though, I think we're a lot of people get it wrong is they think that athletes and people who do reach their goals are constantly motivated, that it's it's an ongoing feeling it but people do think that and so they think something things wrong with them. When Thursday comes around and they're not feeling it.
James Owen Roberts: I probably I'd say it's probably very miniscule. I say maybe maybe Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, Tom Brady, it's very, very small percentage that I probably don't need. And I'm generalizing because I don't know because I've never spoken to, to any of them. But they always want to strive for the next thing. I think that's the only downfall I think of the athlete mindset of, we never really happy. So if you were to achieve your goal, would that bring you joy and satisfaction?
Leanne: Yeah, right.
Calla: Sounds exhausting guys.
Leanne: Yeah. It's a mental illness.
James Owen Roberts: You're trying to always ascertain the next thing. But when are you ever gonna be happy with what you've achieved? Because you always want the next thing I kind of went well, that's relatable to to everybody else, because, well, you losing sight of whatever it is okay. For me, I think coming up was to make the national team, then it was silver to make the continental championships World Champs Paralympics. And I think once I had done that I lost sight. Okay, well, okay, that the crowning glory is or the or the, the mountaintop was the gold medal. And I spoke to retired athlete last week, and he kind of went well, I could, I couldn't use that as motivation, because it's going to work on your best day, the piece of ribbon or metal, but on your bad day, you need to make it more simplistic than that. And that's probably why it wasn't as successful as probably could be. Because I made it all about the metal at the end of the day is like, I want this gold medal. So bad. I didn't embrace or take into account the small wins of okay, it's no mean feat to make. And I did manage to do it three sports. So that's quite an achievement. And when I when I think about and actually kind of give myself kudos. Have you made a national team? Not everybody can do that. Not everybody can represent the country on the world stage. But because youre in that bubble of big deal, no business, this is normal.
Leanne: Well, you have a expectation for yourself. That's so much higher, and everyone's looking at you. Like I can't believe he achieved all these things. But you're still looking ahead.
James Owen Roberts: I probably play it down to I'm getting a little bit better at having more of the je ne sais quoi quality American attitude to some extent of kind of go well, I am a big deal. I'm not going to rub it in your face.
Calla: You're proud of your accomplishments. Yeah, I mean, I think that that's a beautiful thing.
James Owen Roberts: Whereas the British narrative is the opposite of okay, I've done something, but let's play, let's play it down a little bit more, as it's, I don't want to make you feel bad, but make you
Calla: You don't want to be braggadocious or like, you know, yeah, I understand that. But when things are all goal oriented, if it's not planted in purpose, and if you don't know why you're doing it, I think that's where things can kind of get off track because then you're always like, trying to go for the next like, validation, almost like the accolades. Like you said, Where was my write up? You know, like, all those things, you want the acknowledgement, but if you get that and then it's gone. I mean, like when when you win an award, it's only there for a little while, like it's so fleeting.
James Owen Roberts: I think the best thing I've seen on social media yesterday, Mike Tyson said all accolades they go in a box in the garbage. And that's quite powerful in terms of it does in terms of yes it's an accomplishment at the time is what you said your whole being on in terms of achieving but it does it doesn't mean anything, it's not it's not going to serve me going forward if I start living in the past, and he's got point we live in in the here and now. I think now he's no longer a boxer he's got a lot of wisdom to get okay. He was pretty much very dangerous caret character to be in at that time. But in terms of the amount of knowledge and wisdom probably athletes bring to the table is immense because for the ordinary person, it's gonna take them obviously could take years to be able to get to the the mindset in terms of like dedication, hard work, justice, that respect for the other individual. You're not going to not show up and not give 100% to to another team. I still do it. Now. I've got I've come down a level, but I've got an obligation to do it to myself to give the best that I can. To give the best to the team regardless of how I feel. But I think coming back to my point with the Mike Tyson of their insignificant, okay, I've got a picture behind me. It's a memory. And I resonated with that at that particular point in time in my life, those awards, those accolades, the team kits, they're pretty much everything revolved around that. Now, It still brings him great amount of pride to wear it. But I know, in my heart of hearts if somebody said, Oh, would you do it again? Yeah, in a heartbeat. I'll go back. I learned from some of the mistakes that I did. However, going forward to the games that I didn't go to would be Rio in 2016, or Tokyo just gone. I chose a different trajectory on it. I did speak to one of our performance directors last year about it's like, well, you didn't you chose to go a different direction. I did still like to hear that. Whereas now it's, it's now it's easy with me. It's like, I chose to go a different route.
Leanne: Yeah. And you would have to choose it eventually. Anyways.
Calla: No regrets.
Leanne: What is it all about for you now? What are your goals moving forward?
James Owen Roberts: Helping as many people as possible, I think sports sport served a purpose. Yes, it was motivational inspirational for other people. But that's not why I did it. I did it for solely maybe. Push, maybe my family. But it ultimately was me. Whereas I get greatest satisfaction. Going to work every single day or being my best opportunity person to serve the community as I can be, as I think somebody said, Well, does your motivation weign? No. If it does, I'll take a real reality check as to Okay, James, why you do in some arguably as a financial rewards, that doesn't motivate me. It can be actually a curse? Sometimes it's okay. I'm not at my target this month or this quarter? Why not? But ultimately, it comes back to Conversations, did I have a meaningful connection with that individual? If the answer's no, that's my fault. If I can't communicate properly, or in a response that you're gonna get in a vision of, of power and take action that's on me. Because if I've not been able to communicate in a way that okay, James has energized me here, I see that what I'm doing at the present moment, I don't want. I don't like I can see what he's talking about. I can believe in it doesn't mean to do something about it. Obviously, on the other hand, I don't do that. I don't make you aware of you. Some people don't see perceive that they got a problem. They might not see it. It's not as clear as day. That's my responsibility as it will be. It's not just me, as an individual coach is the responsibility the industry to kind of go no further bullshit of, you know, the next fad thing, it's, it's, it's that, okay, that might work for some people, not for everybody, but it doesn't have to be this nice shiny thing that's going to get your result. I think everything that I read or see now, that's common sense. That's not difficult.
Leanne: And it's boring, and it's boring and tedious, and people don't want to do it .if I'm
James Owen Roberts: If I'm repeatedly being told that it's the right answer than.
Leanne: Yeah, no, it is the right answer! It's sticking around for a reason. It's not the fun answer that everyone's looking for.
Calla: I'm gonna have you do your best American effort to kind of tell us some of the things that you're excited and working on right now or what you're happy to be providing to your clients. Can you talk a little bit about what you're helping people with right now?
James Owen Roberts: At the moment, this is where it gives me a buzz - it's the mindset is trying to change somebody's behavior it's trying to make them aware of you don't even need me. If I can give you the arsenal to be aware of when it got you coming on stock you can fix it there and then you don't have to wait for me to check in. You don't have to wait for me to kind of go okay, this people who specifically was fucking up Let me stop it kind of stop it before it gets out of control. It is trying to give them a tool that enables them to kind of even challenge the thought process. Okay. I, I used to be of the age of do what I say not as I do. I don't do that anymore. If I've not done it before, I'm not going to give it to you. If I've not tried tried it in any capacity a bit physical, nutritional, or mental? I'll give it to you. Because because I am not going to put you it'd be very hypocritical for me to say, well, I want you to try this. I've not done that. It's worked for other people.
Leanne: Let me know how it goes.
James Owen Roberts: See how it goes? On the mindset stuff? I've gone leaps and bounds kind of go, Well, where am I insecure? Where do my vulnerabilities where am I? Where could I be operating on a higher level? What can I do to raise my standards, and everybody obviously around me is gonna want to do so as well, because you don't want to be left behind. So it's, it's obviously learning from as many people as I can, and molding it in a way that is in accordance with me. Because ultimately, I could spot anything that I want to do from an another individual. I might not I might I might say it, but I might not believe in terms of I've taken upon myself this year to to raise the standard in terms of well, okay, what is what is acceptable for me? What what is what am I infinitely capable of? Absolutely anything. So that's what I want to give to the clients this year in terms of okay, if you got something that you want to achieve, what's stopping you, other than yourself?
Leanne: What right and your life is the perfect picture for people to realize that that is the truth. And you're the perfect person to relay that message. And just the fact to that you give your mom and your grandma and your support system, so much credit for putting you where you are. I mean, that's empathy at its core. Because I think a lot of people who they get so self focused, because you have to be so self focused, because you have to be at practice at this time. And you have to put in all the effort and you have to, you know, make sure that you're sticking to this schedule and giving your all but for you to look outside of that and be like, these people supported me and I couldn't be anywhere without them yet. I still did all of this work. And look where it got me. I think that that's such
Calla: It's pretty badass.
Leanne: yeah, motivational message to share with clients. It's it's truly amazing. That's why we wanted to have you on.
James Owen Roberts: Appreciate that.
Calla: Yeah, of course. I can't thank you enough for coming and hanging out with us. I really enjoyed our time together. And I wish you all the best with everything that you're working on and future goals for yourself, I have no doubt you'll achieve them.
Leanne: And beyond
Calla: And I hope too, that you have more moments that you know, crack at your empathy and let your heart out a little bit because it's a beautiful thing when you do express it. And I really appreciate you being so open and honest with us today. It's really nice. Yeah, yeah,
James Owen Roberts: My pleasure.
Calla: Awesome. Well, where can people get connected with you and find you if they have more questions or want to get involved in have you as a coach?
James Owen Roberts: You can find me on my website, JameOwenRoberts.com. If you wanted to hear more insight into me from the other end the microphone my podcast is The Mindset Athlete, which you can find on Spotify, Apple podcast or anywhere that you listen to podcasts.
Calla: Thanks so much, James. I really appreciate it.
James Owen Roberts: Thank you.
Leanne: Thank you, James. Cheers.