7 Keys to Top Level Performance

7 Keys to Top Level Performance

Today I would like to share with you the 7 Keys to Top Level Performance.

These 7 actions to take reach your peak optimal performance I have used consistently over the years to achieve GREAT results.


Does it always work? No.

There will be days no matter how hard you try you just simply cannot execute.

That’s okay.

Top Level Performance requires hard work

Sometimes you can do everything right and the opponent will still outwork you.

Yes, that’s fine as well.

Expect that your opponent too will be operating his / her own 7 actions.

However, develop the habit of taking the 7 Keys to Top Level Performance by implementing them correctly and consistently and I guarantee your success rate will spike!

There are affiliate links within this post. What this  means is that if you decide to purchase anything through one of my links, I'll be rewarded with a small commission at absolutely no extra cost to you. This small commission helps me run and maintain my website.

Top Level Performance requires training

Top Level Performance: In One-on-One Competition

In one-on-one competitive sports, as in our brick and mortar and online businesses, there will certainly be times when we will fall behind late in the game, and we will need to summon a “knockout punch” to deliver.

Sometimes this takes the form of implementing deliverables of an important project deadline for a valuable client that cannot be extended, or meeting our money-raising target for a crowdfunding campaign we are running during the “eleventh hour”.

Often there are no fall back strategies, and no way to get around the dire circumstances we face. This is a MUST win for us to bring our TEAM to victory. A very tall order.

Stay Calm under pressure

Stay Calm Under Pressure

Imperative to our ultimate success in any competition would to be “delivering the goods” in such clutch moments, when we need most to apply a steady hand, laser-focused concentration, and to stay calm under pressure.

These are the moments that truly define all of us.

Learning this unique skill set of staying calm under pressure is vastly different than achieving a high performance routine during practice sessions.  

This is a skill set that only experience can teach you.

Next I will demonstrate by way of 2 true real world sports examples how this principle works in action.

Top Level Performance Kaju Tsunam Pool team

Top Level Performance: Kaju Tsunami vs. You Rack Discipline

One of these experiential clutch moments happened one time in our Team 9-Ball pool First Round playoff match.

It was the Summer BCA 9-Ball Championship First Round Playoff Match at Amsterdam Billiard Club between “You Rack Discipline” and yours truly “Kaju Tsunami”.

We got off to a dominant start and were ahead 14-6.

The night started off strong for us, as they won the coin toss and elected to have us put up our player for the 1st Match, and our first player defeated there’s by a dominant score of 7-2. This was followed in the 2nd match by our second player taking their second by a strong 7-4 victory

After 2 matches, our team “Kaju Tsunami” was ahead 14-6 with two matches more to go - and both team’s best players still waiting to play.

That’s when the unexpected happened.

Expect the Unexpected

Always Be Prepared for the Unexpected

This was when an unforeseen disaster struck, for this 3rd match now was the time I would put up one of our best and most reliable players.

His nickname is “Storm”, he is one of our best shooters and his wins during the regular season often were automatic. They countered by playing their D+ rated player against him, who certainly was a decent but inferior player.

Pool is like chess. Occasionally even the best can at times be vulnerable the high stakes pressure.

Pool is like chess

In an unprecedented performance or lack thereof, “Storm” went on to lose 7-0 to the inferior player. Now we were in deep trouble!

What a shock to the system! We were now still ahead but only by the slimmest of margins 14-13 going into the 4th and final match. They now put up their best player, a Level B odds on favorite player to win.

And who did we counter with? You guessed it, ME.

These are the moments we play for.

Although I was still shell-shocked by “Storm’s” 7-0 loss and the fact I knew I was suddenly bearing the weight of the world on my shoulders, as soon as the first rack was struck my previous behavior now quickly morphed into a renewed calm focus.

Suddenly, the attitude I adopted was “…the pressure is on HIM, not me!” Whenever I needed judicious advice and assistance, I would call a coach up to the table to discuss the way I should take the shot.

I only focused on the next shot every time, literally keeping a steady hand on every shot. Whenever I didn’t have a clear shot I would implement a defensive maneuver called a “safety”, placing the pressure on my supposed “superiorly talented” opponent. These maneuvers forced my opponent into making uncharacteristic mistakes.

The match ended at 12:30 am EST, and my persistent tenacious play helped me to defeat the Higher Level B opponent by a score of 7-4.

Top Level Performance Better Lucky Than Good

Top Level Performance: Kaju Tsunami vs. Better Lucky Than Good

So here is my one other competitive pool scenario.

Our team “Kaju Tsunami” is playing a hotly contested 9-Ball billiards match vs. “Better Lucky Than Good” (an ironic name, since they are a truly GREAT championship team).

Going into the last match, we are now only ahead by the slimmest of margins 18-17. We are going into the final match and I have no choice but to play against the opponent team’s best player.

He is an A level player, I am merely a C+ level player and the odds are highly stacked against me that I can win, and pull out an important victory for the team.

Breaking out cluster

Fast forward 2 hours later, here is the result after a hard fought battle.

The match ended at 12:30 am EST, and my persistent tenacious play helped me to overcome the odds and defeat their BEST level A player by a score of 7-4. After our team fell behind late in the night, my unlikely and AMAZING win helped seal a close 25-21 victory for our team!

How was I able to beat that Level A player, a player of much superior skill to cinch the late victory for my team?

You all may wonder, what the answer to this Great Burning question.

It's ALL about adopting the right mindset.

7 Keys to Top Level Performance

The 7 Keys to Top Level Performance

Ladies and Gents, this post is not meant to boast about any ostensible pool prowess, nor is it my intention to bore you with all the myopic details.

This post is meant as a lesson by metaphor on how perform at your top level performance.

So I will keep this short and to the point.

Here are the 7 Keys to Top Level Performance:

  • 1. Be deliberate, take extra time to execute the task at hand with a surgeon’s precision.
  • 2. Perform your job within yourself, meaning don’t implement tasks beyond your capability.
  • 3. Breathe deeply, inhale for several seconds then exhale the same.
  • 4. Keep a steady hand, and learn how to execute with slow thoughtful precision
Top Level Performance Dial
  • 5. Use all of your available resources to win the game or to get the task done
  • 6. Double check your work, and ask a coach, your accountability partner (or trusted colleague) for feedback before submitting
  • 7. Rinse and repeat until you win the game or get the job done.

When we apply all 7 of these proven winners to our daily businesses as exercises, we build a steady regimen of HABIT that is most conducive to “staying calm under pressure” during our most critical make-or-break moments

Optimal Performance Graph

Collectively, these are the pure moments that contribute most to our online business successes and "WINS" of the game. These are the moments that truly define us.

And these are the moments that make us feel the most alive!

Always remind yourself of these 7 Keys to Top Level Performance.

Thank you for reading this article, and here’s to your Great Success!

Feel free to make a comment, they are always welcomed.

About the Author

KAJU is the band leader and founding member of OFF THE HOOK, one of the premiere dance party bands in the New York Tri-State Area. After contracting a mysterious hand disorder, Kaju now writes to help other musicians and artists deal with disabilities. Currently he is a Full-time Affiliate Marketer and 1-on-1 mentor at Wealthy Affiliate, a community that can help anyone start an online business without prior experience. This is where he teaches others how to make a great passive income. Read more about his story here!

  • Mitch Crim says:

    Now that my comments are being recorded, I’m getting the hang of finding the comments section of each article.

    I particularly enjoyed the 7 Keys of Top Level Performance. I can certainly relate to the pool metaphor, as I was quite good as a young adult. My father had purchased a pool table from a closed-down tavern when I was 6th grade. It was quite small and the pockets extremely narrow. Accuracy is key with tavern pool tables.

    He placed it in a shed behind our house. It was a tight fit and most shots could be made with room to spare. However, when the cue ball was close to the length-wise bumpers, we had to learn to make the shot with the cue stick almost vertical. Great training, and a great post!!


    • Kaju says:

      Wow,Thanks for sharing this wonderful story Mitch! I can see that visual in my mind’s eye of you a a 6th grader in that shed behind the house standing near the length-wise bumpers with your cue stick almost vertical, where every shot in that location is practically a masse shot! You must’ve gained quite unique skills playing pool in your shed:)

      Personally I have always loved the game, I play all the games (8 Ball, 9 Ball, 14.1, one-pocket, etc) and I enjoy competing. Check out my blog post “To Be the best, Play with the Best” where I had the great fortune to play Hall of Fame legend Francisco Bustamante!

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