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Negativity Is Making You Sick and Can Kill You—Julien Uhlig’s Experience

julien boxing
Boxing is a great way to measure your performance level.

Negativity is making you weak 

How does negativity affect your performance, your focus? Four months of boxing have shown me the results. Happiness is a mindset and can be learned. When it is time to perform, it is time to be positive to improve your performance.  

The key part of good storytelling includes a personal challenge; there can barely be too much struggle. If you don’t have a struggle, you don’t have a story. Now I am no brain surgeon, not have I done any scientific research whatsoever, but I have observed that negativity does not work as a motivator.  

“When Millennials quit after an argument, they are quitting on you.”

This might be limited to our western background, but they will just quick, mainly deal with Millennials. Not because they are weak, but they don’t need that shit in their lives. When Millennials quit after an argument, they are quitting on you. You have just proven to them that you are not an effective leader but a neurotic cry baby. 

With the next election, we will hopefully outgrow this style of bully leadership once and for all. It is like yelling at a child; at least I feel sorry for the child to have a guardian who can only hit and yell and therefore has the conflict resolution skill. Some people stop learning early, especially when it comes to conflict resolution, which nobody ever spends a minute thinking about. Problem resolution should be taught in every school.  

About four months ago, I started on a personal experiment. Months earlier, I had lost all interest in going to the gym suddenly. Then Corona hit, and all I wanted to do was drinking wine. So, I gained a few pounds. I always struggle with mornings since I work at night for as long as I can remember. It’s tough for me to get going in the morning. Also, like all of us, I have a long list of challenges, having a baby, a demanding Brazilian wife, massive unresolved family issues, and a career I had to rebuild from scratch. Then add Corona, income unsafety, the list goes on. Corona did not help.  

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I found a personal trainer, his name is Yoka, to teach us boxing five days a week. He has become my alarm clock, getting me out of bed every morning. One of the benefits of living in Bali is that this is financially possible. One month five days a week, training at home is equivalent to two personal trainer lessons at a Los Angeles gym. Maybe essential to know that I spent ten years of my life as a professional opera singer, which has made me obsessed with peak performance principles.  

Very few people are immediately judged by their performance

Especially while auditioning, you have one minute to get people excited. Nobody cares about your performance the night before or how great you sang in the shower. Your audience will judge you like an athlete! Some seconds decide if you made it or not, did you get the note, catch the ball, jump, whatever. This second can make or break you. This is a very different reward system than someone who mainly gets judged by, did they get to work on time. Are they well dressed? Do they seem cheerful during the coffee break and put in some extra hours? People will judge people by their performance.

Focusing on peak performance over long term performance makes a huge difference. Now working a lot with online presentations, peak performance becomes relevant again. You cannot get in the game anymore slowly; you need to control it from the beginning.  

Your strength will vary based on your focus

Boxing is a great way to measure your performance level. There is no routine, so have to react to the orders of the coach. The moment you think that there is a routine, you will miss the next hit. Also, especially in defense, only has a millisecond to react, so everything is in the moment. Your Strength will vary based on your focus.  

Here comes distraction and negative thoughts. I will sometimes check my phone during training to respond to a few work messages. My performance drops maybe 30 percent. Heart Rate goes down, tunnel vision and focus disappear. Restarting the workout is ten times harder than before I checked the messages. The brain is looking for more dopamine from the next message. Just working out is not cutting it. 

Negativity: A lot worse than phone messages are negative thoughts

They can affect me so much that all the power seems to leave my body. The brain appears to disconnect from the environment, and I cannot perform the most painless moves. It is like the brain energy suddenly flows in a different direction. Energy level dropping, I don’t want to stay, I want to run and hide. It takes minutes to refocus.  

At least in boxing, negative thoughts make me measurably weak, undecisive, powerless. Everything you want to avoid when you have to peak performs to solve problems. This is what makes the bully strong. Making you feel weak and indecisive when it is time to fight. You stand there frozen and in shock when you should be peak performing.  

Please stay away from negativity wherever it may come from. Negative Family members, friends, draw the line that you don’t want to hear it. It has never solved a problem and will make you weaker and perform worse and ultimately negatively impact you. 

Written by Julien Uhlig 

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