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Jonathan Fader | Performance Psychologist | Former Director of Mental Conditioning for the New York Giants | Author of Life as Sport
Lavin Exclusive Speaker

When C-Suite executives, celebrity athletes, and emergency first responders want to improve their performance in high-stakes situations, they turn to Dr. Jonathan Fader. A performance psychologist to the nation’s top business leaders, and the former Director of Mental Conditioning for the New York Football Giants and the New York Mets, Fader applies proven psychological techniques from high-pressure, high-reward scenarios to everyday work and life situations.

“A how-to manual for not only improving your performance in any endeavor, but more importantly, achieving your potential in life.”

— Mike Richter, NHL All-Star Goaltender

It’s no easy feat to help high performers reach even greater goals, but that’s exactly what Dr. Jonathan Fader does: training hedge fund executives, professional football players, firefighters, and more to perform better under pressure. Fader uses proven performance psychology techniques and a unique, client-centered approach to enhance others’ motivation from within. From there, he discusses the benefits of conscious, repetitive practice: “The most successful people create a masterpiece of a routine in their lives,” he tells audiences. “A series of small but meaningful activities and habits lead to massive gains over time.” These gains can be as varied as mastering effective short-term project goals, developing stronger focus at work, confidence in your leadership and communication abilities, or making clearer decisions in stressful daily circumstances. His vibrant, actionable talks will show you how to refine your potential. 


Having spent two seasons as the Director of Mental Conditioning for the New York Giants, and nine years previously as the team psychologist for the Mets, Fader’s breadth of experience stretches into multiple, literal, arenas. Fader is part of The New York City Fire Department (FDNY) Mental Performance Initiative. In his debut book Life as Sport: What Top Athletes Can Teach You About How to Win in Life, Fader shares the key tactics he learned working with athletes, applying them to real-world situations. His next book, Coaching Athletes to Be Their Best: Motivational Interviewing in Sport is authored with the co-founder of Motivational Interviewing, and harnesses the power of conversation to build meaningful relationships. A licensed clinical psychologist, Fader is the cofounder of the Union Square Practice, mental health practice and SportStrata, a coaching and consulting business both located in the heart of New York City. Fader is a certified consultant and member of the Association of Applied Sport Psychology. He also writes The New You blog for Psychology Today, and has appeared on CBS This Morning, CNN, Good Morning America, Fox News, ESPN, Business Insider, Bleacher Report, and has been profiled by the New York Times. 

Speech Topics

Team Building
Beyond You The Power of a Great Team

No matter the industry, location, or culture we work in, most us function as part of a team. Sports teams know this well, and they invest time and capital in carefully selecting personnel and developing their chemistry for the world’s biggest competitions. In this highly interactive talk, sport and performance psychologist Dr. Jonathan Fader shares his insights into how elite sports and military teams functionand how we can apply those same tactics to our own teams. From empowering individuals to uncovering the secrets of unified motivation, Fader’s fun and memorable talk has valuable takeaways that any company or organization can use to maximize their potential. Fader believes that our greatest strength as humans is our ability to collaborate and innovate in a group. In this talk, he reveals his simple methodology for understanding how teams develop mental strength and flexibility together, the role leaders play within a team, and the insider knowledge of what makes a team creative.

Better Conversations, Better Outcomes The Science of Improving Communication
In this highly practical and experiential talk, Dr. Jonathan Fader outlines the fascinating science-backed methods of empathy focused conversations, and how you can make use of it in your field. Most organizations are seeking improvements in their culture, team cohesion and motivation. At the center of his talk, Fader highlights the use of the motivational enhancement techniques, such as motivational interviewing, that are strong facilitators to developing all of those. Dr. Fader views conversations about behavior change between people as a collaboration focused on strengthening motivation and commitment, aiding in resolving ambivalence and obstacles to change. By learning and using specific language and inquiry, as well as compassion and understanding to elicit the primary participant’s reasons for change, we can guide another person to discover his or her own reasons to create a catalyst for decisions and actions. For over twenty years, Fader has trained thousands of professionals on the applications of motivational enhancement techniques in diverse areas such as healthcare, business, military, corrections/law enforcement, social services, first responders, sports and more. Fader will help you learn the guiding principles of motivational enhancement, and how you can put it to work on your own terms.


The Rituals of Success Building a “Masterpiece” of Positive Habits
Success comes from our habits, says Dr. Jonathan Fader—the outcome of finely tuned behaviors cultivated over time. In this talk, Fader explains how successful people create a masterpiece of routine in their lives: a series of small but meaningful activities and habits that lead to massive gains over time. Fader, a performance coach to elite athletes, hedge fund traders, firefighters, and artists has both taught these routines and learned lessons from those he has taught them to. Audiences will leave this action-oriented talk with the knowledge developed and practiced by a range of talented people, from communities that are usually closed. Fader will show you how these skills translate into everyday life so that you and your team can build your own masterpiece in action. In doing so, you will learn a number of the rituals of success, including:
  • Mastering fear so you can take risks and innovate
  • — Training your brain to excel under stress
  • — Fueling your fire by developing internal motivation
  • — Learning to embrace challenges by having a growth mindset 
Life as Sport A Mindful Approach to Greater Performance and Gratitude in Every Field

We live in an outcome-based world. We fixate on profits and losses on the playing fields of our offices and bedrooms, and fret about winning the big game and meeting the bottom line. But for many of us, being preoccupied with results—with all its attendant stress and anxiety—prevents us from performing as our best selves.

What if there was a way out? A method we can use to sharpen our strengths and enjoy every moment? Over the past 20 years, sport and performance psychology has taught elite performers to train more than just their bodies, but also their minds: preparing for stressful moments and connecting with the most powerful versions of themselves. In this rousing keynote, filled with personal stories and evidence-based research, Dr. Jonathan Fader adapts a host of mental skills-training approaches for everyday life, on and off the field. Whether you’re looking to enhance performance at work or home, in business or in parenting, Dr. Fader delivers the most valuable lessons from the biggest courts and most watched fields of the sports world. Teaching us to visualize success, develop positive rituals, rediscover our core passions, and live more mindful lives, Dr. Fader delivers an inspiring message—to live life as a sport, and to embrace each moment with skill, enthusiasm, and enjoyment.