Will, Not Skill – 5 Success Tips From ‘Iron’ Mike Tyson

tyson-1986From the desk of Victor Pride
Subj: An effeminate fat kid turned himself into the most feared fighter who ever lived

I’ve been reading Mike Tyson’s biography Undisputed Truth. It’s an extremely interesting book, one of the most interesting I’ve ever read.

Most people know that Mike Tyson was a typical ghetto kid. He was in and out of juvenile detention, had no father, no money, his mother was on drugs. His life was stealing and robbing. 

What maybe you don’t know is that Mike was a very shy, effeminate, scared kid. He would rob people’s houses then neighborhood bullies would beat him up and steal his plunder. Mike was always too scared to fight back.

He used to watch one of the neighborhood kids shadowbox. The kid would try and get Mike to shadowbox with him but Mike was too shy to join, so he’d just watch.

Eventually Mike found himself in his first fight ever. He had to fight because a neighborhood kid hurt one of Mike’s pigeons. Not knowing how to fight, Mike just mimicked the guy he had watched shadowbox and he knocked his opponent out cold.

Not knowing what else to do, and knowing the shadow boxer would skip during his workouts, Mike started skipping after he knocked the kid out. I read this on a quiet airplane and started laughing out loud.


Mike Tyson and Cus D’amato

Mike found himself in juvenile detention at 10 or 12 years old. It was there that he met a former pro-boxer who taught Mike a few things about boxing. The former pro took Mike to see legendary boxing trainer Cus D’amato.

Cus saw something in the young kid and knew he was going to be champion of the world one day. Cus started training Mike, both mentally and physically, in the ways of the warrior. Mike eventually moved in with Cus and his family in Catskill, New York.

In a television interview Cus confessed that the only reason he was alive was because he found Mike Tyson. If he hadn’t found Tyson, Cus said, he would have died a long time ago. The only reason he was staying alive was to see Tyson become heavyweight champion of the world.

It was this part of the book, the time Tyson spent with Cus, which I found the most enjoyable. The time just before his avalanche of success. The time he spent preparing for his opportunity. The time before he became the youngest heavyweight boxing champion of the world.

The time right before the avalanche of success is much more interesting to me than what someone does with 100 million dollars. It’s more important to find out what champions did to become champions, not what they do once they get the top.

Below are the 5 top quotes from Undisputed Truth and all 5 quotes are from the time Mike spent training as a gladiator with Cus D’amato.

Mike’s quotes are in bold and the Bold and Determined commentary is below the quotes.

#1 “My life depended on succeeding. If I didn’t, I would just be a useless piece of shit”.

Success is the purpose of life. Success in your chosen field.

The opposite of success is what? Failure. What’s the opposite of a winner? A loser. What’s another name for an average guy? Nobody.

You have one life to live, so if you don’t make that one life a success what is it? A waste. A useless piece of shit.

#2 “The way I looked at it, I was born in hell and every time I won a fight, that was one step out of it”.

Emasculated males tell you it’s wrong to be angry, to feel angry. Don’t take advice from the eunuchs.

Anger is the most powerful tool in the toolbelt.

Take that anger you have and channel it.

Put it to use and fight like your life depends on it.

#3 “When all the other fighters would leave the gym and go out with their girlfriends, Cus and I went back to the house and devised our scheme…Cus would say, ‘No’ will be like a foreign language to you. You won’t understand the concept of ‘no'”.

Preparation is key. Morons talk about “luck” like luck means anything.

The successful become successful because they did something to become successful.

The successful:

  • Work towards success.
  • Become obsessed with achievement.
  • Ignore outside distractions.
  • “Sacrifice” all the bullshit that isn’t important.
  • Focus totally on one goal.

#4 “Cus was all about manipulation, psychological warfare. He believed that 90 percent of boxing was psychological and not physical. Will, not skill”.

The mindset is the key.

All the skill in the world means nothing without the mindset of a winner.

Skilled men fail everyday because they don’t have the eye of the tiger or the mindset of a winner.

#5 “Cus was a strong believer that in your mind you had to be the entity you wanted to be. If you wanted to be heavyweight champion of the world, you had to start living the life of a heavyweight champion…

Always training, thinking like a Roman gladiator, being in a perpetual state of war in your mind, yet on the outside seeming calm and relaxed. He was practicing and teaching me the law of attraction without even knowing it”.

There’s a saying called “fake it ’til you make it’. But here’s the reality, a winner knows, a winner is certain of victory. So it isn’t faking, it’s simply taking the initiative and knowing beyond doubt what your future will hold. Mike Tyson knew it, Cus D’amato knew it, and every other winner on earth knew they were winners before they had proof.

Fake it ’til you make it? More like do everything in your power to make it, don’t accept “no”, don’t accept failure and don’t let fear drive you away from success.

Forget the “fake it” part and just make it.

Until next time.

Your man,

-Victor Pride

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    • says

      Hey, I really like that quote. It makes a lot of sense.

      Thank you, Sebastian, for posting it.

      I’m going to write this quote down on a piece of paper and then put it on my fridge so I’ll be reminded of it every time I go and fetch some grub.

      Good stuff!

    • Abgrund says

      And he just couldn’t say “no” to ear meat. A truly great man not only becomes great, he knows how to stay great and what to do with it.

  1. says

    Before I fight (in a cage or ring), I always watch the YouTube video called “A lesson on intimidation from Mike Tyson”. It also illustrates well the necessity to act the part – regardless of what you may emotionally feel. His attitude towards training and winning is motivating!

  2. says

    He was a hero in post-Soviet Kazakhstan, in 90s. And even in early 2000s. Among box likers and boy fans, I mean. Many of my friends admired him.
    It’s pity he has shitted his life the way he did. His story proves that one is behind both his successes and his failures. Perhaps, this is because he had no plans stretching to eternity.
    Still, he was one of the greatest fighters. That’s a fact.

  3. says

    Thanks for the recommendation, Vic. I’m a huge fan of Iron Mike. Most entertaining boxer — ever. Didn’t konw about this book though. I’ll check it out ASAP. Putting it on my list.

  4. Da Grappla says

    Well…they’re rather Cus D’Amato tips than Mike’s.

    Iron Mike got lost when Cus passed away…Don Mob King managed him and managed to rip him off too.

    Maybe we got some tip here; know who to trust

    • Justin says

      1: Mike lived it, that’s what makes it more valuable coming from him.
      2: ‘Got lost when Cus passed away’ is proof that it works when you think about it. Lose that drive and wil? Suddenly you have a hard time staying at the top.
      3: Learning who to trust (contracts written by YOUR attourney) is just one of those life skills. Like learning away from someone on the street if they ask for a light and you plan to oblige.

  5. David says

    Is Tyson’s body possible with just boxing training and weightlifting plus healthy diet or was he taking something else?

    • Abgrund says

      Name a top tier athlete who was not “taking something else” and I will name a liar.

      If you want to be #1 out of billions, you are up against hundreds of men who all have perfect genetics, superhuman drive, ideal training, etc. The “natty” man cannot compete for the #1 spot against men who have everything he has plus science.

        • David says

          Yeah it was a naive question.. I remember having read a whole 3 part post you wrote about it a long time ago, but I was just asking cause Tyson looks more.. ‘organic’? as opposed to the movie/wrestling stars, bodybuilding champions, etc,

          • Abgrund says

            Serious bodybuilders make it their objective to NOT look “organic”. They inject steroids directly into the muscle, take other drugs to keep their fat and water content down, and do intensive isolation exercises. Tyson was a heavyweight so he didn’t have to use dehydration or other bullshit to make weight class. For a fighter, having some extra mass can even be an advantage, as long it isn’t enough to slow you down and wear you out.

            Bodybuilders don’t have to worry about speed, stamina, flexibility, or even strength /per se/. They can be slow, easily winded, and musclebound, and I don’t know of any top tier bodybuilders who have been top tier fighters as well, even though they /look/ brutal. If Arnold in his prime had gotten in the ring with Tyson on a three-day drunk, Tyson would have knocked him out in one round and eaten his ears. Tyson looked “organic” because he had a body made for /doing/ badass, not /looking/ badass.

    • Michael says

      Actually, although 99.9 % of athletes who perform at the supreme levels of their respective sports use unnatural substances, there are very, very few that actually compete and succeed at the top tier without PEDs or any other synthetic chemicals.

      Take Roger Federer in tennis, for example. I don’t trust tennis’ “stringent” anti-doping program (because they would obviously never ban a top player who was caught taking substances due to the enormous revenue losses the tennis association would incur) but it is quite clear that Federer is a full natural. Just take a look at him and watch his training routine.

      The truth is a very select few have unworldly amounts of talent. However, 99 % of all champions have both incredible talent and incredible will, which in my honest opinion, justifies one to resort to other substances to gain that vital competitive edge.

  6. says

    I like your observation about using anger to fix a problem.

    I used that attitude recently to fix some major body issues. Being fed up with bull is such a productive motivating attitude, and it sounds like Tyson used that state of mind during his comeup.

    I’m curious about it as a long term motivator though. Is anger good *after* you’ve kicked your ass in gear long enough to make a new productive habit?

    • Abgrund says

      “Goverment, like fire, is a dangerous servant and a fearful master.”

      (Attributed to G. Washington, but I’ve never found a reliable source for it.)

      Anger is like fire (or government), in case you missed the point. If you don’t let it run loose, it will do you little good. But if you let it loose at the wrong time, it will destroy you. In the boxing ring, it may be relatively simple to know the difference. In real life situations, it is not so simple. To use your anger effectively, you must first be your own master and hold the reins of the beast, or you may end up in prison.

          • says


            This is a no-brainer. You need to start you a blog. Why? Because in no time at all you will have mountains of cash! You will have money to burn in your fireplace just to keep keep you warm. Hell, you can even use some of your greenbacks to wipe your ass with.

            AND!!!! Hot, sexy women will flock to you! You will have to beat them off with a stick because you won’t have the time for that nonsense because you will be too busy counting your money.

            Trust me…it worked for me, so it should work for you too! :D

          • Abgrund says

            Eh, didn’t notice that the last reply was from some third party. So I am still open to a reply from Mr. Sebastian.

    • Victor Pride says

      Long term motivations change. You use what you need, then discard. You can’t use anger if it isn’t there anymore.

  7. says

    What happened to Mike when he derailled is not so uncommon. It happenes to many successful people when they have one oll-consuming goal, achieving it and then…now what?
    Better have multiple goals, one primary and a few secondary, but all within your field of interest, what excites you, what makes you tick…

  8. says

    I was on a plane with Mike Tyson (Newark-LasVegas) in December of 2012. He took up two seats, that’s how broad his shoulders are, even today. A week before that the movie “The Man With The Iron Fists” was released in cinemas and I saw it by coincidence (it was only on for one night, and I saw it as I walked home from work).

    Once I left the plane I went up to him. His manager told me to get lost but I asked “Excuse me Sir, can I take a picture with you?”

    I’m not black but he said “Sure, come here brother” and put his arm around my shoulder. I only had a cheap one use camera, he asked if I got the pic (turned out the pic was really bad quality but I got it). I said “Yea, thanks I got it”. That was it.

    I’ll never forget that he had the humility to do that. The whole airport knew him and everybody was talking about him being there the moment he walked past.

    Thanks for this article Vic!

    • Vendetta says

      A lot of that Law of Attraction and The Secret stuff is total bullshit. Yes, those products have made millions for their creators (brought them what they wanted) but just wanting is not enough, and those products mislead people into thinking that wanting and desire is all it takes and that the universe will just give you whatever you want.

      We all know that is bullshit.

      • PM says

        Did you read the book think and grow rich? I mean, its not about think it will happen and someday by magic you will wake up in a mansion lying next to a top model, with a lamborghini in the garage. It’s about having a desire and conditioning your mind and subconscious mind for you to have a mindset obsesses with your goals. You still have to work and create a plan and have determination to succeed. But having this desire engraved in you subconscious, this obsession, you will naturally have more ideas and imagination to work towards that goal. If you read the book, which I doubt, maybe you weren’t ready to understand it, like the author says.

          • says

            You wouldnt say what you said. That all you have to do is believe and it will happen. Its false, thats not just that

        • Justin says

          Yes, exactly. When you get a good solid meaning out of it, it’s invaluable.

          But the law of attraction is presented in a way that is more spiritual than psychological, and there is a lot of pollution.
          Thinking something negative doesn’t bring you more of that. “I don’t like apples” isn’t going to give more apples for you to hate. It may cause you to notice them, and doesn’t offer a solution, but it doesn’t magic more apples to you, either.

          http://youtu.be/Yr7Wkz7W7Vs You could say this entire video is the law of attraction, presented with proof, and a method of applying it.
          The last minute is the most valuable part of the video.

        • Vendetta says

          I read the introduction to your your article and then looked at the headers for the activities you recommend. I don’t dispute what you wrote, I agree. Having conscious control over ones subconscious is the hardest thing for any human to achieve.

          Probably why they leave that difficult bit out of books like The Secret – hard work doesn’t sell to the masses, dreaming and wishful thinking does.

  9. mikenaus says

    The power of NO gets you to the top. Give up on the good to chase the great.

    Adding this book to my must read list. Thanks Victor

  10. Mike says

    What is with being the person you want to be neglecting other persons I’m tired of others I do not want to look up to anyone I want to be like Arnold Schwarzenegger said: See myself in his position instead of admiring him.

  11. says

    Wow, I had no idea. Sounds really inspiring. I only knew Mike Tyson as that black dude in the Hangover movies.

    My favorite Tyson quote from Hangover:

    “Like you said – we all do dumb shit when we’re fucked up.”

    Too true, my friend.

  12. Grim says

    Mr. Pride: Great post as always. I used to visualize myself being Tyson in the 90s in the gym, particularly when doing squats. You could do a post about that. Do you visualize in the gym?

    I’m not talking about tree hugging leftist nancy boy yoga visualization for women. I’m talking about when doing heavy ass squats, I pretend or think about some badass. In 1997 it was Tyson.

    I have also been Goldberg (the UGA football player and pro wrestler), Brock Lesnar, Jack Reacher (a fictional character), Ladanian Tomlinson (running back).

    I don’t even do this on purpose. When I go to the gym, I try to be whatever badass I most recently saw on TV or whatever.

    Watch a Tyson fight or read his book then go do squats and pretend you are Tyson. Good way to tear it up.

    • Victor Pride says

      I visualize on my way to the gym, I sit in the train and imagine what I’ll be doing, when, and how much. Um, normally I don’t visualize myself as other people but I will admit that I have visualized myself as Jesse Ventura’s character in Predator.

    • says

      i do this too. i always use the image of Jason Bourne running on the beach in the Bourne Supremacy when i have nothing left in the tank. I always dig deep and find that imagery gives me extra energy. I read a whole article on it once written by Wayne W Dyer, they did an experiment where they’d have subjects hold their arm out to the right, not strained just held out. they’d get em to visualize a weak image, eg a starving child, and place a small weight on the subjects hand. the arm would drop like a stone. they’d then repeat except this time they would have the subject imagine a strong image, eg Arnold doing bicep curls, a tiger about to strike, etc. They’d place the same weight on the subjects hand but this time their arm wold hold the weight! I believe it was called Kinetics, but i cant remember.

      if you want some INSANE imagery for the gym and videos to get you rly pumped, check out Zhasni Motivation on youtube. I watch “The Beauty of Bodybuilding part 2” before every workout. First time i saw it i welled up (the guy in the middle, you’ll see what i mean). Insane videos by this guy, he deserves a mention!

  13. says

    I’m new to your web-site and am happy that I found it. Great article Vic. I am, and will continue to train and work like a warrior. There IS no tomorrow, it’s guaranteed to no one.
    Best wishes,

  14. says

    “The time right before the avalanche of success is much more interesting to me than what someone does with 100 million dollars.”

    I have been reading a lot about General George Patton of WWII fame lately, but the most interesting parts of the several books I have read have been his ascension. If you look at the pages I’ve folded/ripped they are all during those parts. Once the books get to the actual war I tag very few things.

    For those of you unfamiliar with the story, General Patton was a shy kid with a high voice who decided that he wanted to become one of the greatest generals who ever lived, and spent the rest of his life in pursuit of his vision. He was doing all the stuff we talk about today back in the early 1900s.

    • Middle-Aged Male says

      Patton was probably America’s best combat general, but he married a rich woman whose father provided the funds so he could pursue soldiering.

      • says

        Funny thing is that when he decided between Kate and Beatrice he thought Kate to be the wealthier one, but he chose Bea instead. It wasn’t until afterwards that he realized that the Ayers were one of the richest families in America.

        As for his merit in service, I don’t really care whether or not he was the most brilliant tactician. He had his blunders, but the rescue of the troops in Bastogne is probably one of the greatest tactical feats of modern times considering where the 3rd Army was when they got orders to head north.

        The reason I hold him in such high regard is because I don’t think anyone has ever pursued the vision they had for themselves to the extent that he did.

        • Abgrund says

          I can think of many others who did, and at much greater risk and/or cost to themselves. I can also think of men who had much more impressive success as generals.

          Patton was good at winning when the cards were in his hand. In 1944 Nazi Germany was already beaten; it was just a question of whether Russia or the West would conquer Germany. Western (and Russian) strategy called for an able but not necessarily brilliant leader, a methodical man who could make efficient use of advantages without taking potentially disastrous risks, and win /predictably/.

          In a man who must make efficient use of hundreds of thousands of other men, over the breadth of years and several hundred miles, this is not a trivial quality, and many wars have been lost for its want. But it is not the material of Arbela or Cannae or even Blenheim.

          • says

            You are missing my point entirely. Patton never would have had a place in WWII if he hadn’t busted his ass earlier in his career.

            That’s how it ties back to Vic’s Post. Will. Not skill.

  15. Deltime says

    Great post about one of the best books I have ever read. Knocked it out in 3 days. I recommend that everyone read this one from Iron Mike and Ratso. There are parts that will make you contemplate life and other parts will have you laughing out loud.
    Good Stuff Vic

  16. says

    Mike Tyson was ruthless. Mike was a winner with the mindset of a winner. He’s fallen far because he was too kind and trusting. Regardless of all that, he made shit happen, took nothing and made it into something. And that is the biggest lesson to be learned. Turn nothing into something by being something not nothing.

    Thanks Vic.

  17. says

    I got this book as a Christmas present from my girlfriend. I’m still reading it from time to time. Reading a chapter here and there. Very interesting book and it provides plenty to learn from. Recommended for anyone that feels like their missing their inner dog mongrel and wants to learn how to get it back. If I could capture one name for this book so far I would caption it “Mongrel”.

    Buy it, have a read, learn something.

  18. LUIS says

    Victor, thank you for everything. I’m happy that I found this blog. Unfortunately it was 3 years too late. I broke one of your rules which was having a child with the wrong person. Now I have a sentence of 18 years of child support.

    • Takumi says

      Dude it’s up to you how you live with what you have, you can’t change your past. EVEN IF you didn’t have a kid with a wrong person now, you’d be like “It’s too late now, I should have done that earlier” or something, with that kind of mindset.

    • The Grizzly says

      “I broke one of your rules which was having a child with the wrong person”

      Regardless, you focus on the legacy of your child. Everything happens for a reason and your child is your lineage and namesake. Being a father is an honor.

  19. says

    Killer post Vic. You should write one on dealing with the loneliness of being a lone wolf. Your work has inspired some serious positive effects in my life this past year. Already looking forward to the next article.

  20. Ninja says

    Vic you could write an article for so many boxers and never finish. Roberto Duran, Mayweather, Pacquiao, Willie Pep, Foreman, Ali, Tapia, etc. etc. this is why I love boxing. Kings among men.

    • Victor Pride says

      Boxing is an interesting sport, all the guys have the same story – down and out, nothing to lose, everything to gain.

  21. says

    Awesome post!

    Nothing gets me more amped up then watching Tyson highlight reels, as far as I’m concerned Tyson would have been the best boxer who ever lived if D’Amato had lived even five more years. Some other cool things about the way D’Amato trained Tyson were:

    1. Tyson was short for a heavy at 5’10, but D’Amato convinced him this was an advantage because he could get in close and “open up like a son of a bitch”
    2. Tyson was known for his offense but also had some of the best defense in the game, especially his head movements by using the peekaboo style D’Amato trained him in
    3. D’Amato taught him that fear was your friend, it saves your life many times a day, as well as giving you faster reflexes and aggression
    4. He would tell his young guys that their opponent feals as much fear as you do. He would pace their reality and lead them towards greatness. He would tell them they wouldn’t sleep before the night before the fight, that they would think the other fighter was more confident and in better shape,but that the other fighter was thinking the same thing. He would pace every scared instinct they had, that way by the time they got in the ring they knew Cus had been right and would be right again on them winning.

    • Victor Pride says

      I agree, when Cus died so did the fire inside Tyson. Remarkable he was still able to dominate for so long without Cus.

  22. says

    I am currently reading this book. If you want to learn the true art of war – READ THIS BOOK. This book contains many true qualities that can be transferred over into the business world and the entrepreneur world.

  23. says

    Great post to start the week!
    “He was practicing and teaching me the law of attraction without even knowing it”. I like this one, so the comment about it. Another way of rephrasing it: “What you think, you become”. Choice is yours to either remain a marauding ape or the writer of your own life.

  24. says

    Just bought the book. Thank you.

    Crazy post by the way, loved the quotes. Can’t believe he was shy and effeminate as a child.

    Victor, do you do any martial arts?

    • Victor Pride says

      Nope, I life weights. But I’m a spectator, I highly enjoy watching MMA fights and the UFC roster in particular. What Dana White and the Fertittas have been able to do in such a short time is remarkable.

  25. says

    Thanks for the post Vic. I grew up in the same broken down area Mike Tyson grew up at, which is good old east New York Brooklyn. Mike Tyson is truly a fascinating person. It’s sad though, how is reached the top only to fall all the way down. I am happy to see that he is slowly moving up again. God bless Mike Tyson. I too plan to read his book.

  26. says

    Great read Vic. I love Mike Tyson. He agression in the ring inspired me when I would compete at kickboxing. Being a shorter guy too I mimicked some of his techniques and developed an awesome overhand right hand because of it.

    I have no idea why I haven’t read that book yet.

    Chris Ubanks book is also good.

  27. BC says

    While training at a boxing gym on the southside of Chicago, I had the pleasure of meeting another one of Tyson’s trainers, Kevin Rooney. ( He can be seen in working the mitts w Tyson in some of his earlier training clips on YouTube). Anyhow, he was b.s.’in with a few of us after we were done working out, and he said something very interesting ( and funny at the time.)

    “Michael (Tyson) is a very smart man.” Needless to say, this brought a few chuckles from most of guys standing around, myself included. Let’s face it, Ol’ Iron Mike doesn’t exactly come across as a Rhode’s Scholar. What I didn’t realize at the time was the type of intelligence that Rooney was talking about. If you watch any of Tyson’s interviews ( the one’s where he’s not talking about eating children), you’ll find that he IS very smart when it comes to understanding human nature. His, or actually Cus D’mato’s, thoughts on intimidation, fear, and visualization are spot on. Plain and simple, the guy’s a survivor. If u take account his up-bringing, his rise to the top as the youngest heavy-weight champ in history, his marriage to that evil leech Robin Givens( like she didn’t know what she was getting into?), his subsequent fall from grace, loss of the title, prison time, death of one of his children, etc. , you would have 2 admit that the guy has experienced some things most of us probably never will and he is still going.I’m not saying that I agree with all of the things he (Tyson) has said and done, but I will say I would have to agree with Rooney for the most part. Love him or hate him, one thing’s for sure…he was the most feared fighter of his time and one of the most interesting characters boxing has ever seen.

  28. Brandon says

    Hey Vic,

    I have a question totally unrelated to this article. Is there a way I can eliminate (or at the very least heavily minimize), losing any income I’ve made online through taxes? I’ve noticed you’ve touched on this in old articles. Would opening an offshore account be the solution to this problem? I’m in Canada by the way, if it matters any.

      • Brandon says

        It’s pretty similar to the United States’. Essentially, I just want to know how I can avoid the government taking my hard-earned coin and keep most, if not all of it, all online profits to myself. If you were still living in the US, how would you bypass this problem?

  29. says

    What does a moment of impact mean to you?

    I saw it in a movie and it resonated. The moments in life that things just click, you find yourself holding what feels like purpose. A fleeting, magical thing for most humans.

    So throw this on the pile Victor. Another thank you from someone that fate managed to help find your website, download human virus software and (tosses old, useless mindset away) upgrade to Bold & Determined: My Way.

    You helped with the website advice, your all-out existence as the best version of yourself you can POSSIBLY aspire to be is appreciated beyond anything words can squeeze out of explicable meaning.

    It’s a work in progress, I’m getting my sea legs back. I grew up reading anything and everything that was in English. Got away from being…well…smart. Now I’ve recaptured the hunger for freedom, personal wealth generation and no-brakes, full-speed ahead ass kicking.

    Bro to bro – THANK YOU.

  30. Tristan says

    Yo Vic, I’ve been interested in real estate investing as a source of income for a long time. I’d love to see an article from you along the lines of making money through real estate. Thanks for the blog man.

  31. says

    As always a great article Vic, but wouldn’t you say there’s a degree of luck here? EG – he met a guy who could train him and teach him. What about the other kids in that center who didn’t meet that guy or got shot before they got to a detention center? I agree that once opportunity knocks it’s all up to you, but that opportunity has gotta be there. Just take what you said last week about the Vietnamese taxi driver, don’t you think you’re lucky compared to him?

    • Victor Pride says

      Nah. Mike met the boxing trainer inside and begged him to train him. The trainer said clean up your act and we’ll see. Mike went from being a son-of-a-bitch to being a good kid. His reading jumped from a 3rd grade level to a 6th grade level in a matter of weeks. He met Cus and did everything Cus said and worked towards the goal. He spent his entire teenage years training. Luck my balls.

  32. says

    Awesome post,

    I remember when I was younger, I would often confuse successful and talented people as lucky, that they never had to work hard to achieve what they had.
    I was fooled by unsuccessful people around me to have me believe it. Little did I know that all it was, was their limiting beliefs ingrained in my own.
    The truth is, what we don’t see is the sheer blood, sweat and tears that went into their craft and their talent.
    Sure you can have the natural attributes that can make the journey easier and less painful. But you still need to work hard for it.

  33. Sean McKenzie says

    I always hear you talking about not-sacrificing and living below your means. I think it is an amazing way to live in order to achieve success. However, I believe you should create and article that focuses solely on how to live like a poor man who knows he is a winner.

  34. says

    I think there’s something to be learned from Lewis vs Tyson. OK Tyson was out of his prime, but I believe Lewis in his prime and Tyson in his prime, Lewis would’ve still killed him.

    Why? You can take all the anger you want, but you will never ever beat a calm man with a strategy. Anger is important for the fire and drive to succeed, but alone its nothing.

    Lewis is a prime example of a boxer who never lost his cool even when his opponents would talk shit to him. He stayed level, he knew what his gameplan was, and he let nothing distract him.

    Tyson was great but Lewis is the true shining light of recent boxing history. Strategy and truckin on will always beat raw aggression and determination. That’s my view anyway.

  35. Mo says

    Great article Uncle Vic. I have a question. This is kind of related to will. I love to workout, but when I tried to work out 7 days/week, I had to stop for 3 days bc the side muscles in my quads wouldn’t let me lift heavy even if I wanted to. Whats the cure to these annoying pains? Painkillers didn’t work for me. I just wanna get in the gym and kill every day, not just 3 days/week.

    • Abgrund says

      1. Stretch after working out, *before* the muscles get stiff, before you even cool down.

      2. As much as possible, keep the muscles moving, *without* resistance, between workouts, even if you’re too sore to actually work out.

      3. Make sure you are getting enough water, potassium and magnesium (but not too much; excess magnesium will give you the shits and enough potassium can kill you).

      4. Do fewer sets and fewer “forced” reps (past muscular failure). Pyramids are especially harsh for muscle soreness.

      5. Take hot showers or baths. This will help relax the muscle and increase blood circulation, so you recover faster.

      6. If you’re too sore to do your normal work out, skip it, but do whatever you can, whether it’s benching an empty bar or just stretching.

      7. Don’t use painkillers. Steroids are supposed to accelerate muscle recovery, but of course you should never do anything illegal.

      8. Don’t overtrain. Your body takes time to adapt to a large, sustained increase in your rate of exertion. A marathon runner doesn’t run a marathon every day and he doesn’t start his training with marathons at all. Back off to a level your body can tolerate, then gradually build more intensity.

      9. If that leaves you with excess energy to burn, do some light cardio. It may not help build muscle but it improves the circulation, and that means more endurance and faster recovery in the future.

  36. says

    Hey Vic,
    The link to the Steak & Eggs article on your “New? Start Here” page is busted. It turns up with the search function though.
    Keep fighting the good fight.

  37. Nn says

    Sucess….yeah…….take it from someone who has it…..y u r rite…….it takes sacrifice, determination and focus……..u do ignore the unimportant, BUT, unfortunately, EVERY SINGLE BUSINESS MAN that I know who is successful, ended up ignoring kids, family, events……

    ..I don’t know about professions, u know, mds, attorney and such, maybe their ride to the top is different, but for business starters, it’s the ugly truth. Whether or not the family breaks apart is whether or not the at home spouse can understand the sacrifice involved and NOT demand all the success and monies, but NOT the sacrifes

  38. says

    Great read as usual! Totally agree about the mind concept. To learn the ability to use the mind to one’s advantage has to be the most crucial skill anyone can master.

    One of the best books I’ve ever read on how the mind/brain functions is Joy of Living by Mingyur Rinpoche. Don’t get fooled by the title. It isn’t some self-help feel good fairy like book. It is a hardcore and in-depth look into the mind.

  39. says

    Eminem is another great example of this concept. The dude could have quit ten years ago but still throws down. Check this line, he is saying he has skill, but he still grinds.

    “But look at the accolades, these skills brung me
    Full of myself, but still hungry
    I bully myself cause I make me do what I put my mind to”

  40. says

    Quote number 1 reminded me of a quote I heard the other day. It was:
    “The only things you are entitled to in life is failure and death”.

    Failure is the default, seems mike knew that from the start.

    Good post man.

  41. says

    I love this. I was actually thinking pretty much the same thing awhile ago. Believing in yourself is the most important thing, once you believe in yourself, anything is possible. Once again, an excellent article.

  42. says

    I read this recently too

    Mike definitely had/has a lot of issues, but in his early days Cus instilled the work-ethic and belief of a warrior within him.. that’s some powerful sh*t. He worked Mike like a dog, same way Mayweather, Roy Jones Jr and all the other world class boxers were made to work during their childhood.. sad story, but powerful reminder of how WORK leads to success

  43. says

    “My life depended on succeeding. If I didn’t, I would just be a useless piece of shit.”

    Top of the world or the bottom of the ocean, baby.

    I love this mentality.