Episode 23 – Forget Thibault (Tennis Player) | Importance of Preparation for Self Improvement
Practice makes perfect as the popular saying goes. In this episode, Ravi and Thibault discuss the importance of practice and preparation on our everyday lives as professionals of our own chosen fields.
Ravi (Host): I’m here, we’re in a conversation with Thibault, a fantastic tennis player and the new the recent economics graduate from USC, and who comes from a family of tennis players, and wonderful to meeting to you Thibault. So tell me three things that you learned as a sportsperson.
Thibault (Guest): As a sports person, how important preparation is.
Ravi (Host): The importance of preparation?
Thibault (Guest): Yes, the importance of preparation. When you see nowadays, especially in like the professional tennis tour, it’s unbelievable to see that. You know, I would say, when my father was a tennis player, they would be like amazing tennis players. The way like the sport has advanced with, you know, the technology and with the material. You also see now every single player based on their nutrition and based on physical practices and the recovery that they do, everything is done so much more. People would play tournaments before and you know, it would be playing tennis would be one of the things they would do during the day and everything is made for, you know, every player to be as, you know, the best.
Ravi (Host): Almost maximizing a performance.
Thibault (Guest): Exactly, it has become so much more like this. And I feel like when you see a clinic [inaudible] can, who has personal [inaudible] with him, who spends his entire day stretching, who does yoga, he is making the most potential, you know, he’s the most obvious potential
Ravi (Host): Importance of preparation, okay, and then.
Thibault (Guest): Then you have people like better. Not only are the most talented people in the world, but they also do this. And he’s not 37 years old, and it’s unheard of someone being this old. One, and all this preparation is, you know, how much time is to spend, you know, the origin is dedicated to. How would I practice better today? How will I, you know, how would I learn something new today? Preparation, I would say, is one of the most important is not only you can apply to your sport, but you can apply to anything else you want to
Ravi (Host): Anything else in life. There is a room called the No. Malcolm Gladwell talks about the 10,000-hour rule. So to become a master at anything, yes, 10,000 hours. So it’s all about preparation, and focusing on it, and then you become very good at it. They’re not gone just like that. There’s so much energy efficiency, thinking. And it’s a much more holistic way to prepare, and then I can see why these people are so good at what they do. What would be number two?
Thibault (Guest): The second would be, take enjoy in pushing yourself. Enjoying the struggle of everyone tells us. It’s not about how many times you win, it’s how many times you can fall and get back up. And then you see this with players that have a lot of injuries, everyone said that all would be retired because of his knees. Everyone said Federer was done a couple of years ago and get his back issues. I feel like they love so much what they do. It’s exactly what you said, you know earlier, you’re going to keep doing what you like doing. And if you find you know a way to enjoy working hard if you find a way to I don’t like to use the word suffer in your sport. But if you enjoy pushing yourself and when it’s hard to it’s hard, but now it’s like is the best moment. If I keep pushing, now that I’ve got to this stage, this is where I am. People have to understand this, you know, it’s not a matter of how much can you do in front of other people is how much are you going to do when no one is looking at you.
Ravi (Host): In fact, I define leadership as what you do when nobody’s looking. So that’s very, very true.
Thibault (Guest): Because you do it not for you know, the view of other people have other people think about you, you do it because you want to get someplace. If you go out there and you know, you’re stretching when your coach is looking at you and you do your service when you know your teammates are looking at you, that’s great, you improve. But I feel like you’d prefer the wrong reason.
Ravi (Host): In fact, I say this, that the only person you’re accountable to, answerable to, is the person in the mirror, which is yourself. That’s it. There’s nobody else, and if you make sure that person is happy, you are happy with that person, you are in peace with that person, you’re accepting that person, then you’ll do great life. But if you wear a mask, and go out there and do things for other people, one day the mask is going to come off.
Thibault (Guest): And I would say that, again, it relates to you know, every industry or every aspect of life. You know, take any advice you can take, and I will tell you an unbelievable story. And again, you know, I’m fortunate that my you know my father works at the French Open now. And so he gets you to know, to spend a lot of time with people like this. And even though nidal looks such like a, like an animal like a gladiator on the court. He is, I’m serious, he’s the kindest human being you’d ever seen.
Ravi (Host): Really? Yeah, yeah.
Thibault (Guest): You would think that he’s won 12, French Open. He doesn’t listen to people, right? Like he thinks he knows better than anyone. One day, my father was on the side of the court with the dolls, uncle, his coach, and a third person was here and the third person that had played tennis, it was good, but you know, wasn’t famous by any means. And the three of them were talking, looking at an adult practicing. And the third person said, “It’s funny, I think adults should do this a little bit more that could help us for him.” And then does uncle Toni said, “You should tell him.” And this man said, “He doesn’t know why. I’m not his coach. I’m not going to tell him how the sport is.”
Thibault (Guest): Toni Nadal, his coach said, “Rafi come here.” So he stopped the practice in the middle of a rally with okay. And he said to the man, next thing he said, “Please, can you tell him what would you say about your forehead?” And he was put on the spot?
“Yes. I’d love to hear what you have to say.” And like I said, Well, I think you know, when you do your preparation for your shot, you should try to do a little bit more, I guess. He’s number one in the world. He’s one. He listened to a random person said, “Okay, thank you very much.” He tried for 15-20 minutes to do this. And, and he said, “Oh, I felt those things. I felt those things. I prefer to do it on my way. But thank you for the advice. I appreciate it.” And so many professional players, so many people in life, when they make it to a certain point, they think they know better than anyone else.
Ravi (Host): The humility.
Thibault (Guest): And so here’s my third one. And I know I take 10 minutes to explain it. But taking as much as you can listen to as much advice as you can and select the ones that you think fits you the best. Whether it’s an athlete, or whether it’s someone in life, I think this is important.
Ravi (Host): I mean, this is you are very, very insightful. I don’t know if you knew it, very thoughtful. You have real experience, you’re so young. I mean, you’re not that he worked for 20 years, and you’re giving this kind of talks. But your insights are from real experience, seeing these things and talking to people. So please continue doing that. And the last one is extremely powerful. Because I once sent a tweet, the speaker reveals himself, the listener learns, I would rather be a learner. So I just want to listen. Because the moment I speak, the world knows what I know what I don’t know. So I would rather just be quiet. So British people speak less, because they are like, absorbing it. And when they say it, it comes like an ace in tennis. And you can’t, can’t say no to it. Right. So wonderful, Thibault. Excellent insights. These are the kinds of articles you should be writing. Okay, and I’m going to end the recording.
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