Nick Saban and The Process

Originally posted 8/23/2018

Nick Saban has won over 218 College Football games, to only 62 losses. He has captured six National Championships, including five in the past ten years. He’s been named SEC Coach of the Year four times. He has been named National Coach of the Year two times. He’s coached 29 All-Americans and 23 First Round Picks in the NFL Draft. And it can all be boiled down to ONE word, PROCESS.

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We hear the word “process” thrown around a lot these days in sports, whether it’s the Philadelphia 76ers piling up losses for the sake of draft picks, or many other teams who enter a rebuilding phase in attempt to return to competitiveness. 

Process was coined originally by Coach Saban when he embedded it in the cultures of his football programs whether it was at Toledo, Michigan State, LSU, and now currently at Alabama. But, what exactly is “the process”? What does it mean to trust it, live it, embody it? It is not simply that it takes time to accomplish a goal. It is more about what YOU do to accomplish that goal.

Coach Saban breaks it down to one simple question, you must ask yourself, “what do I have to do to accomplish the goal that have?” He goes on to include “if you’re going to be successful you must have goals, a vision, something you want to accomplish.”

It doesn’t matter if you’re trying to lose ten pounds, make your school’s varsity soccer team, or climb Mt. Everest, you must have goals, and you must have a daily checklist accomplishing that goal. And the best way to go about this is focusing on one day at a time. I want to make my school’s varsity soccer team, so what am I going to do today in order to work towards that goal? That is the process!

Sticking to your process takes discipline! It can be daunting to stay disciplined to execute tasks each and every day, but discipline is ultimately your choice. Discipline can be boiled down to you know what you need to do, but can you make yourself do it even if you don’t feel like it? That’s your choice! 

ON the flip side, discipline is also you know there is something you shouldn’t do, that may distract you from your process, but you want to do it anyway. Discipline is keeping yourself away from that distraction, and sticking to your daily tasks, your daily habits, your daily routines. Those tasks, habits, routines are your process.

In order to embody the process, You know what you need to do EVERY DAY, and you are excited to do it! Embrace the grind, embrace the daily challenges. 

The Process does not focus on the outcomes or the results. The Process focuses on doing what you need to do each day to gain the results or outcomes your desire. Trusting your routine, trusting your preparation, and believing in what you do each day will lead to the results and outcome that you are working towards. 

The same can be said about competitions, games, races, matches, etc. The outcome or result that every athlete wants is to WIN. The process teaches us to focus on one play a time, one point at a time, one shot at a time, on possession at a time, or one putt at a time. Focus on each one, and then move on to the next. Once you add them all up, the outcome or result will be there at the end. THAT is the process!

Nick Saban is synonymous with winning. He is the current Head Football Coach at the University of Alabama, and he already has a statue outside their Stadium! That statue was not built over night or after simply one season. That statue is a testament to the task at hand that Nick Saban attacks on a daily basis. That statue was built by the goals Saban set and what he does EVERYDAY to accomplish those goals. 

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The process is one of the three pillars of Dominant Mental Conditioning. How can I help you set goals, establish your process, and stick to it by trusting it? Contact me at winDMC@kaplanmentalgame.com to set up a Skull Session.

Ben Kaplan