I don’t consider Mike Tyson to be a positive role model by any stretch of the imagination. However, he said something in an interview one time that really stuck with me.
During an interview before one of his boxing matches the reporters were asking him how he was going to deal with his opponent. The reporters were discussing his opponent’s strategy, style, how he was going to move, etc. Then they asked Mike Tyson what he thought.
Iron Mike responded with this profound statement:
“Everybody has a plan until they get hit”
Wow! There are so many life lessons that can be taken from that one declaration.
How do you deal with adversity when life hits you? Do you stick to your plan or do you let one thing throw you into complete mayhem? Is it easier to just lie on the mat and stay down for the count, or do you get back up and face your opponent?
When working with our students, I will sometimes tell them this story of Mike Tyson as we are discussing their relapse prevention plan and their coping strategies.
The relapse prevention plan is a very important assignment in treatment. This is an assignment that causes the students to thoroughly evaluate and recognize their triggers, obstacles, coping mechanisms, etc.
When they return home, they are going to face many of the same obstacles (peer pressure, substances, anger, frustration, low self-esteem, etc.) that beat them before. How are they going to deal with them differently this time?
Coming up with a plan is actually the easy part. The hard part is following that plan when they’re in the heat of the moment. When life hits them in the face, will they actually stick with the coping mechanisms and new habits they have learned, or will they revert back to old behaviors?
Our entire focus and goal at KW Legacy Ranch is to give our students the ability to follow their plan when they get hit. Through real life experiences on the ranch, role playing, constant practice, reviewing the plan, intensive therapy, assignments, activities, etc. I know our students are very prepared to meet their opponent, take a hit, and keep on fighting.
We’ve seen that time and again with our graduates. They are following their plans at home, in college, at trade schools, in the military, or wherever they may be, and they are successful. And we are proud to be in their corner supporting them for the rest of their lives.
How about you-what are you doing to stick to your plan when life hits you?
It’s something to think about!