Although Matt Brown is in the biggest fight of his career on Saturday night, you would not notice it through his interviews so far this week, as he is as calm and relaxed as he has ever been ahead of a fight.
The surging welterweight is scheduled to meet Robbie Lawler in the main event of the UFC on FOX 12 fight card this coming weekend. When asked to describe how he worked his way into this position, Brown explained that he transformed his self-doubt into motivation, which he subsequently used to push himself gradually up the welterweight ladder.
"I definitely doubted myself a few time but that doubt created motivation," Brown told Ariel Helwani. "I was strong enough to be able to push that doubt aside and keep doing what I was doing. The way I look at this now - I don't see this as a job, I see this as a life."
While some fighters will set their sights on their overarching goal from the start of their journey, Brown uses a far more shortsighted approach when preparing himself for a fight.
"I'm focusing on the moment and not worrying about the big picture. The big picture will take care of itself if all the small pieces are taken care of. I've learnt to alleviate myself of all this negative pressure."
Brown believes that his upcoming opponent may not be the most "skilled" fighter he has ever faced but he is certainly the hardest puncher.
"I don't think he is the highest skilled fighter. I think he is probably the most athletic, hard-hitting and dangerous fighter. I don't set any expectations for the fight. It has to grow organically."
And regarding the potential body shots that Lawler could pepper him with:
"I did a lot of abs workouts (laughs). I'm prepared if he does (go for body shots). I don't like to make any predictions for the fight, but if he decides that that is what he wants to go for, we have done certain things to prepare. If he goes for that he is going to pay the price for it."