Time Stamps for “Interview with Matt Furey (Part 1)”
1:40– A Champion Athlete
3:13– Levels of Success
6:10– Perform Under Pressure
9:08– Wrong Thinking
12:10– Cybernetics List
15:52– Shift The Energy
17:00– Feel And Grow Rich
19:18– Visualization Is Not The Same As “Thinking”
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William Wood: Welcome back to the show! William Wood here and I’m here with a special guest, I’m here with Matt Furey. Matt is someone that you definitely want to listen to. Matt is an exceptional human being – number one. Number two, he’s an expert specifically in using mindset and visualization techniques for athletes, business and martial artists and he really has some tools, ideas and techniques that can immediately help you take your life, take your own personal success up to the next level. So, without further ado I’d like to introduce Matt and Matt can you introduce yourself a little bit and tell me about your background?
Matt Furey: Sure can William, thanks for having me on the call. It’s a pleasure to be with you and talk to your many listeners. I grew up in Iowa, small town there. 10,000 people and as a young boy I wanted to become a champion athlete and really excel. That’s when I started to first get some glimpses on the power of the mind and the influence it had in the athletic accomplishments.
You can contact Matt Furey at http://www.psycho-cybernetics.com
I parlayed my success as an athlete into an athletics scholarship in the College, there my training in the mind technique visualization and self hypnosis and so on, really, really began in our earnest. After College and during College I won a national championship. Afterward, I went into business at 23 years of age, up in California.
I learned that the same techniques I was learning in College as well as what I continued learning applied to everything in your life, not just a sport, not just a martial art or music but to business as well. So, I applied what I was learning to make myself comfortable selling, which I was very uncomfortable doing at the time. I then used it to then make myself a better writer, to learn to speak Chinese, to learn martial arts and so on.
As a result of learning not just the technique of a certain skill but the mindset behind it, I was then able to elevate myself to a pretty decent level of success in a number of different areas. Not just sports and not just business but I won a world championship in Kung Fu in China in 1997, beating the Chinese at their own game, their original style.
I’ve used it to write best selling books and to make a fortune on the internet. I’ve used it to overcome let’s say fear and nervousness with public speaking and selling from the stage or anything you can image along that lines and then learning Chinese, going to Chines, learning martial arts.
All of this combined I’ve used it in so many areas that it’s hard to say, well that would work for let’s say swimming but it won’t work for track or that works for track but it couldn’t possibly work for writing or doing surgery or speaking or selling and so on. It works for everything. It doesn’t matter what the endeavor is.
William Wood: That’s amazing! Tell me when did you first start using these mindset techniques and what was it that sold you on the fact that they actually worked?
Matt Furey: Well when I was in high school, a book that I picked up was called ‘Sports Psyching’.
William Wood: Sorry that was…
Matt Furey: Sports Psyching. Psyching, like getting psyched up. So P S Y C H I N G. Sport Psyching. That was the first book I read on the subject.
It’s funny because I had stumbled on to and was using some techniques that I later had to learn that these are techniques but when I was 12, 13 years old I remember coming home from swimming practice and taking out a notebook and writing out all my goals and the times I wanted to swim, and all that.
I don’t know where I got that idea from because nobody ever told me and I hadn’t read it in a book. Then there were many times when I would be walking in my hometown to train. I’d be talking to myself out loud, I’d be imagining myself in certain situations and playing it out almost theatrically. Like all 2,3,4 year olds do. You don’t usually see that when somebody is in their teenage years or beyond.
I then later learned that this was really helpful. But that book Sport Psyching was valuable because it taught me that a tremendous amount of being able to perform under pressure is getting yourself to relax. That the more you’re not relaxed, the greater the chance that you’re going to choke under pressure rather than perform under pressure. That the money players or the clutch players are the ones that when the pressure is greatest that they thrive because they’re relaxed.
Then it’s like a walk in the park. It’s not “Oh my god, I’ve got to win this one. This one is really important.” So that was my first one and then at the University of Iowa, we had a coach, our assistant coach used to bring a hypnosis guy in once a year and he’d work with us. He’d make audio cassette tapes for us and I would listen to them before every single practice. I read a tremendous amount of books.
I read more books on the power of the mind while I was in College then I did the textbooks for my class. So I was sort of getting a double major without realizing it.
William Wood: How did these techniques pan out once you started using them consistently in College What were the effects you noticed on your sports game?
Matt Furey: Well, I noticed that was able to perform better and that I was relaxed. Again getting back to Sport Psyching book. Getting myself to relax which would be the first thing that I would be instructed to do when I was listening to the hypnosis tapes.
It was like okay breathe deeply, get yourself relaxed. So, my performance improved quite a bit but I ended up winning a national title as a junior. As a senior, I came back in technically I had more ability, more talent, more skill and so on than I did as a junior. Dramatically more, a lot more but yet I started the year off 14 and 0 but I didn’t win the nationals that year and a number of things went wrong.
One of the big ones was the people have fear of success and fear of failure and things like that. This was an interesting one, this was that I had won the national title and now I felt I had to defend it. So, all my thinking was not about going out and winning another one, it was, I can’t lose I’m a national champion.
I’ve got to make sure I win this thing to show people that I’m good. Proving my worth. You’ll see this in big time sports when a player gets the big contract, saying it’s a 100 million dollar deal, not I’ve got to really perform to show the fans that I’m worth this money.
It’s actually wrong thinking. It will get you into a rut faster than anything. That really didn’t help me, it hindered my progress and I was still an all American that year but it was painful to have more ability and more talent and more skill, it’s put it that way. I had more skill than the previous year and I wasn’t able to win it again. It really tore me up. It really tore me up.
William Wood: Let me ask because this is a really common thing, whether it’s in sports or in business that somebody get’s into this mode where they have a success and then they feel like they need to prove something. If you’re sitting down with a client and you notice that they’re into this I’ve got to prove to people that I can do this, what do you tell them? How do you help them through that?
Matt Furey: Just another game, just another ballpark. It’s just another arena. You’ve got to…in the movie [Inaudible [00:10:35.16]], there’s a scene where the coach, when they get to the state finals the coach gets the team out on the floor where they’re going to be playing the game and he has somebody measure the height from the floor to the top of the room and he has somebody measure the distance from the free throw line to the base line etc. Then every time of course he goes same as every other place.
The moral of the exercise, this is just a game. Don’t make it bigger than it is. Don’t add this pressure to it, or don’t assign arbitrary value to this game as being more important than the others. You’ll hear a lot of athletes that are really high performers says just go out and have fun. I really had a tough time understanding that and working with my son and other athletes, I came to understand from their point of view what that means. if somebody brings an added burden of I’ve got to perform because I performed well yesterday, well when you performed well yesterday did you have that, I got to perform well because I did the day before? No, you were in the moment, you were in flow.
So you’ve got to approach it as it’s just a game and the more tension I have in my body and in my mind, about this game, the greater the likelihood I’m not going to perform well. The more I’m lose and free, it’s sort of an oxymoron here but there was a huge email I wrote last week to my second Cybernetics list. It was called I don’t care. You have to have an I don’t care attitude. But don’t care, of course you care but you care too much.
You care so much that you’re over motivated, you’re over stimulated. You want it so bad you can’t have it. So now if we take the pressure off by saying look I care, just hit the ball. Just throw the ball, then all of a sudden the unhealthy level of pressure the over motivation just becomes motivation. That’s to me what, man if I could have had someone sit me down and say Furey, you won a title last year, it’s over, forget it.
Now go out and get another one. Right, that’s done, it’s in the past, it’s finished. You can use the memory of that, but don’t bring the pressure of that. So in business you’ll see this all the time. People are over motivated to make money and they wonder why they can’t make it.
William Wood: It’s all the mental tension.
Matt Furey: Yes, it’s like if you’re in a sales situation and you have this sense that I must make this sale, the prospect feels that. They don’t want to help you out. They don’t want to help you out of the jam. If you’re selling something, I don’t care if it’s 10 dollars, 100,000 or a million dollars.
You present your offer with enthusiasm and the passion and so on, ultimately at the end of the day if the person says no you don’t care and have the right attitude, you’ve got power. You’ve got power to influence because you don’t have to have the outcome for you to be happy. So there’s another dichotomy is do I have to fulfill my goal to be happy?
Well if you do, I’m sad to tell you you’re not going to be. You might be for five minutes, 15 minutes, but then you’re onto the next thing and you’re stuck with you and most of your life you’ve been unhappy, and uncomfortable so you’re going to default back to that at some point after the goal has been accomplished. Those are things that I know from experience, that I know from having been through them. I hope I thoroughly answered that.
William Wood: That was a great question and let me ask from a mental imagery standpoint, or a visualization stand point. Here you have an athlete or you’ve got a business guy that is going for a big performance and the pressures on and they’re feeling like I got to have this. You sit down, you have the conversation with them that says hey you’ve got mental tension, the more mental tension you’ve got…
There you are, you’ve got an athlete or maybe you’ve got a business guy and they’ve got a tremendous amount of mental tension, they’re sitting there thinking I’ve got to do it, you sit down, you have the conversation with them. You talk to them about exactly what you just talked to us about, how do you incorporate visualization or mental imagery with them to help them learn to relax so that when they get to the big sales call or when they get to the big meeting or when they get to the big game that they actually have that relaxation already there in their body?
Matt Furey: A lot of is it is teaching the person to shift the energy in their body. So it’s not so much a visualization but a lot of it is deep breathing and relaxation techniques and we can get to visualization after that but when they’re frozen, even…I guess I should point out that the deep breathing and relaxation instruction is word picture.
So you’re giving them that but it’s not a result. I want to take them off of the fixation on a result and get them more in the moment and that’s through deep breathing and relaxation technique and really helping get them out of their head. So this part can be confusing to people, but one of the things is that you’ve got to understand that although thinking has it’s value, you don’t really think in [Inaudible [00:18:27.25]].
You imagine [Inaudible [00:18:30.19]]. You feel and grow rich. You do and grow rich. You don’t really think and do it, because thinking is, what’s his name. Henry Ford said thinking is the hardest work on earth that’s why so few people engage in it. Well it’s also the most cluttered, confused and bad way of going about things. You get somebody who was thinking, thinking thinking, he’s not really going to be able to act and perform the way he needs to.
This is where sports and martial arts quickly and effortlessly prove this. You get somebody out on the golf course and he’s got the ball on the tee and he’s in his head and he’s thinking about his shot, and man am I going to do it? Which way am I going to hit it? That’s all head chatter. Non of it is helpful. That same person who we get him out of his head and move him down into let’s say the solar plexus region or the heart center or what we call the lower [Inaudible [00:19:55.10]] in martial arts.
Getting him in the O centers and breathing deeply, all of a sudden all that pressure that the athlete felt will be gone. But if I keep them in the head, thinking and thinking and thinking, the performance is never going to be good. The head trip thing is so bad that even if the person were to hit a good shot, he won’t think it is. I could have done better, I could have this or that, just missed it or whatever. They don’t even observe what happened. So there’s no flow. The same thing happens in business.
Getting a person to, out of the head first and then secondly is to understand that imagination is not the same as thinking. Visualization is not the same as thinking. If a 4 year old who is out playing with his sandal and throwing it around like it’s a football and catching it and running a hundred yards that you’ll see young children doing, they don’t consider that thinking. That’s playing. Playing and their imagination. That word is really important. The word playing.
You’ve got to be playing the game of life. You’ve got to be playing this game called making money in my business or playing your sport. When you have this sense of play, there comes relaxation in the sense of being in the moment.
You can contact Matt Furey at http://www.psycho-cybernetics.com