The First Rule of Mastery: Stop Worrying about What People Think of You


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A USA Today Bestseller

High-performance psychologist Michael Gervais presents a groundbreaking guide for overcoming what may be the single greatest constrictor of human potential: our fear of people's opinions (FOPO).

FOPO shows up almost everywhere in our lives-and the consequences are great. When we let FOPO take control, we play it safe and small because we're afraid of what will happen on the other side of critique. When challenged, we surrender our viewpoint. We trade in authenticity for approval. We please rather than provoke. We chase the dreams of others rather than our own.

But it doesn't have to be this way.

In The First Rule of Mastery, Michael Gervais shows us that the key to leading a high-performance life is to redirect our attention from the world outside us to the world inside us. He reveals the mental skills and practices we need to overcome FOPO--the same skills he's taught to the top performers in the world, including sports MVPs, world-renowned artists and musicians, and Fortune 100 leaders and teams.

Filled with fascinating stories from the worlds of sports and business, leading-edge science, and insights from the frontier of human performance, The First Rule of Mastery is a much-needed wake-up call that when we give more value to other people's opinions than we do our own, we live life on their terms, not ours.



Author: Michael Gervais
Binding Type: Hardcover
Publisher: Harvard Business Review Press
Published: 11/07/2023
Pages: 224
Weight: 0.8lbs
Size: 8.35h x 5.51w x 1.02d
ISBN: 9781647823245


Review Citation(s):
Library Journal 10/01/2023 pg. 131
Publishers Weekly 10/23/2023

About the Author

Dr. Michael Gervais is one of the world's top high-performance psychologists and leading experts on the relationship between the mind and human performance. He has spent his career helping the best of the best across the worlds of business, sports, the arts, and science when they need to achieve the extraordinary. His clients include world record holders, Olympians, internationally acclaimed artists and musicians, MVPs from every major sport and Fortune 100 CEOs. He is the founder of Finding Mastery, a high-performance psychology consulting agency that helps individuals and innovative companies solve the most dynamic human performance challenges through mindset training. Dr. Gervais is also the host of the Finding Mastery Podcast and the cocreator of the Performance Science Institute at USC.

Kevin Lake is the Chief Creative Officer at Finding Mastery. He has collaborated with some of the world's leading performers. He produced Gleason, a feature documentary film about former NFL player and ALS advocate Steve Gleason that was shortlisted for an Academy Award. He created and produced "Playing It Forward" in partnership with Robert Downey Jr. and Susan Downey, a music series designed to raise money and awareness for arts education. For seven years, he led the film division of Mel Gibson's Icon Productions.

Connect with Michael Gervais on Twitter and Instagram.


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