Book Review: "Relentless: From Good to Great to Unstoppable" | By Dr. Mickey Parsons, MCC, BCC

Relentless: From Good to Great to Unstoppable by Tim Grover

If you've never heard of Tim Grover, he's the guy who helped Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, Dwyane Wade and other basketball champions reach—and stay—at the top.

Grover has worked with hundreds of top athletes and is considered an international authority on sports performance and motivation. Kobe Bryant says Grover knows more about the mental side of sports than anyone.

In this book, Grover shares insights into the mindsets of the most successful and accomplished athletes of our time and shows us what it takes to be not just great but unstoppable.

Get Relentless: From Good to Great to Unstoppable on Amazon here >> or support small and local and order it from your local bookstore!

What it means to be "relentless"

The word relentless is used in sports to describe "the most intense competitors and achievers imaginable, those who stop at nothing to get to the end result. In sports, being relentless is measurable by victories and trophies and championships and rings," Grover says.

"In real life, being relentless is a state of mind that can give you the strength to achieve, to survive, to overcome, to be strong when others are not."

Fortunately, he writes, "The ability to be relentless is in all of us."

This book taught me a hard truth

I began listening to Relentless after a client who's a rock star real estate broker turned me on to the book. I was hooked immediately by Grover's down-to-earth aspirational tone. But before long I began feeling uneasy. I was learning that, to use Grover's language, I'm a Closer, but maybe not a Cleaner (or at least not yet).

Don't get me wrong. Closers are great. They do what they're supposed to do. They're the ones you can count on to finish the game, to make the deal.

But there's a level of achievement that exceeds that, Grover writes—a level "so special that most people don't even dare to dream of it." Think Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, Dwayne Wade. They are unstoppable. They are the Cleaners.

Cleaners make miracles happen

Cleaners are the ultimate competitors, the achievers who refuse to be satisfied with merely giving it their best. They create new goals every time they reach a personal best. They take responsibility for results. Rather than focusing on problems, they find solutions.

Cleaners deliver miracles, and not just in sports. You'll find Cleaners in all walks of life, from the corporate boardroom to your local fire department, hospital emergency rooms and ICUs.

Grover dives deep into how Cleaners think, walk, talk, behave and act. He shows readers what makes Cleaners unstoppable, so that we can choose to become Cleaners ourselves.

The 5 mental attributes of Cleaners

There are five mental attributes or attitudes that will help you become a Cleaner:

  1. Taking responsibility
  2. Dropping excuses
  3. Not looking for secrets, tricks or shortcuts
  4. Doing the work
  5. Pushing yourself

Not everyone's a fan of this book

Grover is not without his critics. There is an "alpha male" undertone to his message that some will find off-putting. And not everyone will agree with his view that the key to success is finding your opponent's weaknesses and then attacking.

Others criticize the book because it endorses embracing your dark side and says we should never be satisfied but instead "we should always want more."

A useful book for coaches…

Ultimately Grover's "work hard, dream big" philosophy aligns well with coaching and our charge to assist clients in maximizing their personal and professional potential.

For me, the positive takeaway was his emphasis on the complete dedication required to get extraordinary results. If you can decide, commit and take action, then, according to Grover, you will succeed.

And that sounds a lot like the message of coaching!

Dr Mickey Parsons

Contributing author: Dr. Mickey Parsons founded The Workplace Coach, LLC, in 1999. Since then, Mickey and The Workplace Coach team have coached thousands of executives and leaders. Based in Atlanta, Mickey is also an assistant professor of coaching psychology and the co-creator of a Master of Science program in coaching psychology. Mickey's passion for coaching extends to mentoring new and existing coaches and supporting leader coaches in obtaining their certifications through his Certified Leader Coach® program.

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