He stands looking at the loaded bar.
His mindset is positive.
His belief and confidence in his ability is focused.
“I will lift this” A statement using correct language is made.
In front of the bar he stands, making his way to the bar, he places both hands wide on the bar. His hands tighten around the bar. A forward step he takes dipping under the bar and jams his traps as hard as he can into the bar.
His position is good, standing up, the bar is lifted off the Monolift and now the load is entirely on his back.
Deep breathe, lock, brace and SQUAT!
The lift is a miss. His head down him walks away from the bar.
“What are you feeling right now? What is it that you are thinking right now about what just happened?” I asked.


In my first article of this series, part 1. We established and we both developed a mutual understanding that the first steps of training or engaging with an athlete, team or coach is establishing their mindset. A look into the athlete’s thoughts and perception of himself. In the second article we took the next step and we learnt the importance of changing the language that someone uses, as the language we use is a very powerful tool. The use of this tool and system will empower you. It takes away power from any negative thoughts or aspects and hands it over to you. Within this system greater belief and positive actions are found. In this last part of this series we will learn to change the meaning of things.

The questioned I asked generally confuses people, especially the athlete or coach who falls into the stereotype of a hard person who has no feelings or emotions, or should I say, fails to recognise them. The question is a very important question which does need to be answered and dealt with, in order to put a stop to any negative thoughts which will or may affect their next training and competition day.

When an event takes place whether it be personal, business or sport, this event will have an end result in which we will always attach a meaning to it. The meaning attached to it is based from those feelings and emotions that are derived from the result. Success generally has one set of feelings and emotions and not successful brings out a different set of feelings and emotions. These feelings and emotions can come from pre conditioned mind conditioning, which are internal factors, past events and many other external factors.

I’ve read plenty of literature and spoken too many of a successful person, coach and athlete and there is a very common story in which success followed. The success story comes after a so called failure, a weak performance, or their worst decision ever made. A valuable lesson was learnt in these processes, valuable information received, something of meaning happened to them. They took and embraced that meaning, and it created the road to their success. And it all happened within a moment.
Let me take you back to the beginning of this article when I asked the athlete the question after their miss, “What are you feeling right now? What is it that you are thinking right now about what just happened?”

Their response was not a positive response at all. There was talk of disappointment, anger, frustrated and all the generally common negative responses. Their response needs to and must be change immediately.

When I say to someone, “let’s change the meaning of it” people believe or assume that I’m talking about changing a negative outcome or negative thought to a positive. It’s not what I am aiming to do or mean by it, by no means. I don’t see or entertain the idea of negativity in any outcome. It’s how we perceive it, how we train and condition our mind and thoughts on how to think. It is what we can learn from that event and moment which will improve us, drive us forward and help us. But we generally only use this thought process after a success, win or an achievement is accomplished. Then we see it fit to congratulate ourselves emotionally. If it doesn’t fall into the so called “success” bracket, then we refuse to congratulate ourselves emotionally.

Let me use an example to explain myself better. (For the sake of the exercise, the figures are just made up to help explain a point.)
An athlete runs a 100 metre race.
The athlete places 2nd and runs 11.8 seconds.
The athlete then sets off and returns to training for a period of six months.
The athlete competes again and runs a 100 metre race, placing 3rd, but runs the 100 metres in 11.2 seconds.

After a race meet like that, the response has been as follows.
“I’m disappointed that I didn’t get 1st place. I trained hard for this meet. Hopefully, next time I’ll be better”
Let’s change the meaning of the outcome that the event had on the runner. In order to do so, we need to look closely and recognise all that has been happened and done leading up to this event.
There is no doubt in my mind that the run was a success, how can it not be a success when you have shaven time off your run. Not only that, but what about the added strength you have gained from training, more powerful, better technique. Your start or your finish or something from start to finish in your run has improved. Why would we or you consider it unsuccessful? Did you win the race? NO. But were you unsuccessful or did you fail? Absolutely not! Is there room for improvement, of course there is. But have you improved? Of course you did.

“I AM HAPPY with what I ACCOMPLISHED leading up to today and today. I have IMPROVED and LEARNT much. I AM GOING TOO take all of this experience and learning and BETTER MYSELF”

Look at this above statement, how empowering is it to think like this, how empowering is it to feel like that. What feelings and emotions are running through the athletes mind? Look at how the mind is being conditioned to take all that you have done and achieved and place it in the proper context and not base everything on a WIN or LOSS emotion. More importantly, not judge yourself as a failure, but look at the improvements and know that more improvements are to follow which will lead ultimately is you’re GOAL ACHIEVEMENT.

If we look over history and the modern day success stories, from athletes to business men. They all have a common trait. They have conditioned their mind and thought process that regardless of the outcome, no matter how negative it may appear, there is no negative outcome unless you place one there. Even in what seems to be low moment, a disappointing result or a sale gone wrong. There is always something there for the learning. Something in which you can draw from and embrace. The journey, your improvements, how you have changed for the better. Take all of this and place it in a statement as a way to move forward.

My life at times was dark and cold. There were moments in my life in which I could honestly say that I could not see past that moment I was in. the hole I felt that I was in seemed so deep and wide, and the walls of the hole covered in grease so no grip was able to be made against the walls to climb out. In that moment it felt that it was written that I would stay there. In that moment of despair and sadness came great realisation, live or not to live. I chose to live, I chose to love and be me. I chose to care for me above all people. I wrote and did my list as described in article one. My MINDSET changed. I created a new mindset. I recognised what I was and saw me through the third person eye. That’s when I truly saw me for me. I then started to use the better language as detailed in article two. Used positive language, the use of the proper language gave me a straight simple outline of what must be done, not what we must try to do. How we must do it to succeed, not how we have to try to do it to succeed. Last but not least, the tool that really pulled me out of the hole and kept me out of the hole was learning to change the meaning of things. Changing the meaning of things kept me and still keeps me in a much focused positive outlook.

I do hope that you can use these tools and help yourself. But it’s not your performance that I only hope it helps. It’s YOU. Help the person and the rest will take care of itself.
Help the person always first.

John Rahme

Started training at age of 13 years old, in a bodybuilding style. Competed in a few bodybuilding competitions. Trained in boxing and kickboxing and had a few fights. Started as rehab/gym supervisor in the year 2000 with the Wests Magpies premier league team. In 2003-2007, worked with the St. George Illawarra Dragons from the youngest grades to NRL. 2007- 2011- worked with boxers, tennis players, bodybuilders, sprinters, hockey teams and soccer players. 2012- current, working with the NRL Rabbitohs. I started off in training young at 13 years old. With the transfer in sport from bodybuilding to boxing and kickboxing, I learnt many more methods and styles in the gym. My biggest lessons learnt and greatest guidance came from Ashley Jones and still does. A very big believer in Westside barbell. Through the years of working with athletes, I studied, read books and attended seminars on the way our mind and thoughts work. Building a trust with the athlete I found myself in an almost daily conversation with an athlete about the mental aspect of training and also what was going on in their personal life. This led me to create my own style and plan on how to help them. ITS NOT THE ATHLETE I WAS CONCERNED WITH OR NEVER HAVE BEEN, ITS THE PERSON WHO THAT ATHLETE WAS. Look after the person, and the athlete will be just fine. Contact John here: John Rahme Australia: 0420820559 John is happy to help, please visit his site for more information. Website: or Email: