Recently, a good friend of mine and client and I were talking after a training session. He was querying the mindset of fighting in the ring, and the mental preparation required. He was not a fighter himself, and was therefore curious to understand that mentality so he could at the very least enhance his approach to training and be able to also apply that aspect of mindset into other areas of his life as well.
This discussion opened up more dialogue along that topic thread, and he asked me if I would mind sitting down and doing an interview style documentary on my time as a champion, and more importantly, the other side of retirement: the transitional phase that we all inevitably experience, regardless of the nature of our vocations and careers. As opposed to focusing on just the highlights of my career, we felt it was worth examining the truth behind the bright lights and fame as people would see it; or, the “after years” of 15 years of life as previous prize fighter.
When asked about doing the doco I was clear to my friend that I didn’t want some “Poor me” story. If anything, I wanted the theme to be quite the opposite. I wanted to be open and honest, and share some of my highs and lows, with the intention of empowering people in a genuine and honest manner. I wanted to be able to communicate that message and be able to offer the viewers a deeper understanding of what a warrior is as a whole.
We wove this theme into the story line of what it took to become a champion, what was required to maintain and defend that career of being 11-time World Champion in Muay Thai, and ultimately, what were the challenges I encountered to overcome post that long fight career. We discuss in great truth the mental and physical pain experienced after all the music and lights of a 15 year fight career had dimmed.
To maintain that level of intensity for such a long duration required a lot of sacrifice. Some to benefit my career, and others, detrimental, as for anyone that has to give up certain aspects of their life to focus on being in the top echelon of their chosen vocation. This exposes the imbalances that occur from that process that will all experience in some capacity, which then requires us to then address to restore that to a healthy equilibrium.
A lot of my friends, fans, and associates have only known that side of my career of being fierce and dominant. This documentary also allows a glimpse into the peaceful side of “Carnage”, which although sounds like an oxymoron, is true and present. And of the upmost importance.
It’s hard to be tough. And it’s even tougher to be vulnerable. But that is where the true strength and courage lies. It sounds counter-intuitive, because to be truly strong in every way, not just as a fighter, you have to surrender to that peaceful side, and through that process you develop strength in your total character. You become complete, as opposed to being just strong in one area, which is only one dimensional.
After my fight career was over, I often wondered, “What’s next?”. Now, I know. In some ways, although my fight career has ended, I feel that my real career is just beginning, and the opportunities to share my knowledge and journey are boundless.
I hope you all enjoy the documentary. It will be coming soon. I believe it will help to inspire and transform not just your body, but your mind and soul as well. Because that is what defines a true, and complete warrior. Not only fierce and aggressive in battle, but gentle in nature; honourable, and living a life of integrity and compassion.