Greg Jones Following In Footsteps

Greg Jones Following In Footsteps

Whether in athletics, the classroom, or at your job, everyone has experienced the moment where they have to follow in the path of a teammate, student, or co-worker, and the anguish and anxiety that comes with it. This amazing man did just that, and carved his own path to become a 3-Time NCAA Wrestling Champion.

In the words of today’s interviewee, Mr. Greg Jones, he had several thoughts on the subject:

  • Make it your own personal journey.
  • It is a privilege to have had someone pave a path before, so don’t shy away from it.
  • Use it as an advantage in your situation be it sports, school, or the workplace, in that the competitor will know of that history that you are tied in with, and may fear you and your abilities just a little bit more.

Greg grew up in a small western Pennsylvania mining town, with four other siblings all heavily involved in sports at an elite level. He followed in the footsteps of not only an older brother who had succeeded in Wrestling as well, but an older sister who was an exceptional student and college volleyball player. Sports as a youth was an activity as it should be, and not an outlet to reach people and make a difference at a much broader level as it is today for Greg, who is one of the top Mixed Martial Arts Trainers on the planet.

Greg embraced the challenge of following in footsteps and didn’t side step it, seeing the impact that his older brother was having in college not just in athletics, but as an emerging leader on the team, and an influence in his community.

There was plenty of advice that Greg had during our interview for the next generation as they move into their later teen years and adulthood.

  • Do the things you need to, at times when no one is watching, with a mindset that your competitor is not willing to do them. (Greg used to always come home for winter break and run in 20-degree weather up a hill in the snow)
  • Don’t subscribe to the thought that if you work hard eventually everything will out for you (Sometimes it doesn’t, and the results don’t always go your way, but you’ll be a better person for sure for having tried to do it the right way)
  • Embrace Love & Compassion (In order to find the right motivation in your peers, they have to know that you truly care about them as a person, not just your means to an end)

The pressure of having to follow someone, and all that they have accomplished comes with mental repercussions, so having outlets were a quite important factor in our discussion, and he mentioned adamantly that younger athletes especially should play as many sports, and have as many activities as possible for as long as possible because the “TRANSFERIBLE SKILLS” you’ll attain are immeasurable. Trying to stay focused on just one thing be it Art, Science, Rising in the company hierarchy, Sports etc… tend to lead to a life that becomes stale, and often a distaste for that given activity. Allow yourself some wiggle room to enjoy the experience of the chase, and it will keep you fresher in your pursuit of why you’re there, and what you want.

I asked Greg to speak freely about advice he would give if he was an invited speaker to a seminar of guests from all walks of life (Athlete, Student, or Employee)

  • Appreciate the small victories
  • Be super innovative
  • Imitate but add your own flair
  • Believe in what you bring to the table
  • Expect that guidance will come to you in many ways. Sometimes hands on, and sometimes from a distance where your actions are being analyzed to see your strengths and weaknesses, and how you react to situations.
  • Don’t shy away from the trial and error method that so many have embarked upon before you.

In closing Greg told me that his goal nowadays goes way beyond wins & losses, and he wants to establish the standard in which martial arts gyms are judged, creating values at a much deeper level, and fighters that are peers in their community.

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