About the Episode:
In today’s episode, we’re diving deep into the heart of competition. I’ve always been fiercely competitive, from sports to business, and I believe that to win in life, you’ve got to be in the game. We’ll talk about my personal experiences, from challenging my high school gym teacher to a ping pong match to taking on my history teacher in basketball. These stories aren’t just about wins and losses; they’re about the lessons learned and the mindset that turns every setback into a setup for a comeback. Join me as I share the tools you need to compete with yourself, improve continuously, and define your identity not by your defeats, but by how you overcome them.
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Watch the episode here:
- Discover how a competitive spirit can transform your life’s setbacks into comebacks.
- Learn practical tools to handle defeat and turn it into personal growth.
- Get inspired by Rick’s personal stories of competition and resilience.
- Understand why losing is just as important as winning in shaping who you become.
- Find out how to redefine your identity and become the competitor you’re meant to be.
Hey, what’s shakin’? Hey, I’m Rick Jordan today, we’re going all in. If you don’t know me, I’m extremely competitive. I am highly competitive, and you’re probably laughing because if you’ve been hearing this for a while for me, you’re like, well, da, Rick. I mean, that’s kind of who you are. Right? I’ve always been that way ever since I was young, and I was talking about this over the weekend, even to the point where I don’t know if you’ve ever seen the movie, Rudy. It’s about football. And I think it was Notre Dame. It’s about Rudy Ruettiger, right? My high school gym teacher was Mr. Rudiger. Actually, I think his first name was Joe, but he was Rudy’s brother. Okay. I mean, the dude was just, he was as intense as Rudy was right when you see him in the movie, just as emotionally passionate, and everything else. And when I say I’m competitive, even that young, right, in my early high school years, because I played baseball for nine years, I played soccer for four years, and I was involved in a lot of sports. And I’ve always been competitive. And I’ve been competitive with myself with a lot of things. And that’s the difference if you take a look. And I’ve talked about the book Winning before, right by Tim Grover, and how Tim Grover was the dude who, who trained Michael Jordan, right, the mental toughness that Michael Jordan had, he was his performance coach, not as a technical basketball coach, but his performance coaches mental toughness coach and I see value in having somebody like that because the competitor that Jordan felt ironically, my last name is the same, right?
The competitive competitiveness that Jordan felt was actually always with himself. And back in high school with Mr. Rudiger. You know, the dude was he coached the football team, of course, does I mean, look at Rudy. He coached the football team here outside in the suburbs of Chicago. He also was just amazing at ping pong. And that was that was kind of cool to me. So when I saw how good he was, I challenged him. Like, I brought it up to him, and I challenged him. And I’m like, Dude, I’m pretty good, too. I’m like, why don’t we Why don’t we try this? Right. So then it was like the whole class and, my high school class I graduated in in 1997. And my high school class was just a little little over 1000 people, right, big city. And it was one of one of four high schools in the area that would do this collaborative thing with over 5000 Kids total, right? So in this gym class, it was a couple of 100 kids that surrounded and I was only 13 years old, like maybe 14 tops. And I’m challenging Mr. Rudiger. And as we play, you know, he, you could see that he was actually making an after, which was kind of cool to do this. I ended up losing two out of three, I ended up losing and he won.
But that means that I still won one of the matches against him. And he told me and he’s like, man, I’ve never had, I’ve never had somebody in the school beat me, let alone like Kid, let alone teacher or anything else I’ve ever had. Even in just one game. I’ve never had somebody beat me out of the school. He’s like, good job. And I’m like, Dude, I still failed. I still lost that. He’s like, Yeah, but you probably learned something here, right? That you can continuously improve. And I’m like, Absolutely, I did. The thing is, is that I competed and I got into the game. I’m a competitor, you can’t ever win if you don’t get in the game in the first place. And you risk always you risk the chance of losing. But every loss can be. Every loss can be something that can propel you forward, every bad moment can be something that continuously allows you to learn continuously allows you to say, You know what, I’m gonna put, I’m going to make sure that I continuously grow so that my future can be what I want it to be. Now, at that moment, I could have been soaking right now I want one. But at the same time, I’ve seen sore losers. I’ve seen very bad competitors to where they will literally throw shit across the hall, right to where they’re pissed off, they go and, you know, and that’s so externally focused, because all of a sudden, it becomes like something else happened, right? Or he didn’t play fair, the ref called a bad call, whatever it is, all of these things happen to where they refuse to look internally at what’s going on.
This wasn’t the only time when I challenged a teacher of mine. My history teacher the very next year, played basketball in college. Right? It was an NCAA school, and he played basketball on cars. I’m like, Dude, I’m pretty good. I want to play you one on one. Let’s go. He’s like, really like, yeah, man. Come on. Now, what I didn’t realize at the time is that obviously there’s a difference because I was 15 at that time. And I remember this vividly my age I was 15 at that time. And there’s a difference in muscle mass and muscle development clearly right between somebody that’s in like their upper 20s And somebody that is 15 years old. There just is it’s just called growth, right like literal physical, biological growth. And still, at the moment, I’m like, I think I can do this right. I think I can beat it. So I go into this. And it was close. I mean, we only played up to 15 points. And the final score was 15 to 11. I remember this vividly, it’s like, and he’s like, Man, that was actually pretty good. Never played me again, right? But still, I lost in the moments, I had that temporary defeat, but I’m taking a look at this.
And I could have soaked, right, because he talked about it the next day, how he beat me, right, he talked about it in class the next day, how he beat me. But at the same time, I’m looking at this now not in a bad way, but still that embarrassment, potential embarrassment of everybody else. And you know how competitive High School is, from a social aspect, you know, that you can get made fun of you know, that people are like, Oh, my God, you lost to the teacher, whatever, right. And I’m sitting here, it’s like, that was the very next day, but I’m looking, I’m like, I still, I still scored 11 points on him. So it’s not like I wasn’t able to beat him in that arena, I might have lost the game, but I still scored 11 points on him. And I learned some things in the process and how to improve my game. Because here’s the scenario, right? A low performer, low performer will have a bad day or a bad week, and a high performer will have a bad 15 minutes. I’m telling you this because you have these moments, where you can like crawl up in a corner, you can go into a hole, you can start soaking for hours, on hours, or days or weeks. But the the identity of you is not defined in the moments as far as what happened, the identity of you, is defined by what you do with that experience.
Now, when you continuously take a look at these things, and say, You know what, today was a bad day, I might have had a bad day with a customer, I might have messed up on resolving something at work, or I might have had a fight with my partner, all of these things. It’s like, what’s your choice gonna be? Because when you allow yourself to be defined by that moment, it robs you of who you are supposed to become. Every single one of us needs to be a competitor. And I’m going to give you some tools today, in order to deal with these moments. Are you with me? Just say I, wherever your ads, here are your tools to get through these moments. Because you know, when sometimes they suck, sometimes they really do, right? I remember getting elbowed in the face when I was playing the student like God, that really sucked, right. And then he scored a point on me, I was a physical player. And so was he, when it came to basketball, Ping Pong is a little hard to be a physical player. But in basketball, you can be a physical player. I’m a competitor, I would take him back. All right, this is how it is. So then the next time I drove to LA, I dropped my shoulder and knocked my teacher off his ass. That made me feel good, right? It’s not the moments but you learn how to play these games, you learn how to navigate life. Because these moments moment by moment, do not define your identity, if you allow them to it robs you of who you are supposed to become.
So here’s how to deal with these things with these crappy moments so that you can have the bad 15 minutes, and then get right back in the game. Because with baseball, there’s another inning. There’s another time at bat, you don’t just sit on the bench and salt can be like God, do I suck or that was horrible. I’m embarrassed, everybody’s looking at me. You get your ass right back up there because you’ve got another shot at it right away. Here’s your tools to do this, the very first thing you do, the first thing you do when you have these bad moments that you pause in awareness, you have to recognize what it is. You have to call it what it is, if you sucked you sucked, period. If you messed up, you messed up. If you know you can do something differently, you recognize that man, I could have done something differently. That decision really didn’t go too well for me, but it does not define me. The second thing is it breathes, oh my god breathe. Because when these moments happen, you start to tense up. So you breathe. It’s just that sigh that singular sigh is psychologically proven to release tension in the moments and give you the clarity that you need to move into the next one. Because after this, once you recognize awareness number one, you pause on that awareness. Then you take a moment and you just breathe deeply you sigh to release your tension, the third.
Now that you’re clear, you can adjust your approach. Once you recognize what happened, you release your tension. It’s like okay, now I’ve got that next time up at bat. Now I can get back in the game. What am I going to do differently here right now than to clock me in the face cool? I’m gonna drop my shoulder and knock him off his ass when I go to the rim. Because this is what allows you to go into it because the fourth thing after you pause and awareness number one you breathe to release tension number two If you adjust your approach number three, then you four, hit it again, hard. Go at it twice as hard as what you just did, but with twice as much energy because when the tension is released and you adjust your approach, you can take everything that you have inside you because now you are able to take control, you are able to start redefining what you are going to be from this point forward in life in a relationship in a game. Yeah, hit it fucking hard.
GO ALL IN.