There’s being a star, there’s being a superstar, and there’s being a global icon. It is to this last category that Michael Jordan belongs, and it is sometimes very difficult for him to adapt to it. The proof with this declaration dated from his glorious years.
Abroad or in remote corners, the overwhelming majority of NBA players can still find some peace and live a normal life away from the spotlight and the stars. Not Michael Jordan. Like LeBron James, Cristiano Ronaldo or Lionel Messi, MJ is of the caliber of those who are known and recognized everywhere on earth, and who therefore have to adapt their way of life so as not to be asphyxiated by fans when they go out in society. .
This situation is obviously difficult to manage, and Jordan himself took a long time to figure out how to do it. At the turn of the 1990s, when he was already considered one of the greatest players in history even before winning a ring, His Majesty spoke about the subject with strong words in a interview with GQ.
Michael Jordan’s technique: isolation
The mode of operation of number 23 had the merit of being simple. When the stress overwhelmed him, when managing his image and his problems seemed insurmountable, he chose to isolate himself.
I hide when it’s like that. I hide in my house, and I don’t move. There are days when I don’t want to be around anyone, and I’m a disgusting, evil person. When it’s like that, I stay home until I’m in the mood to deal with people again.
Like a caged lion, MJ roams his home, waiting for the pressure to ease off and for him to be able to put up with fans, journalists, assistants, friends, producers, staff and the like again without being immediately disagreeable. A clear technique… that Jordan however ended up denying and adapting a little later.
In the 1990s, staying holed up at home became increasingly unbearable for the Hall of Famer, who cunningly granted himself, in competition with a large security service, quality moments – at the casino or elsewhere. Moreover, evoking his friend Tiger Woods, subjected to the same pressure, Jordan had these clear words:
Tiger? When he became ultra-famous, his first instinct was to become a recluse. This is not what should be done. And believe me, I know it, because I did the same. You can’t just go do your job on the golf course or the basketball court and come back and shut yourself up in your bedroom. I did, and it’s miserable. Just watch TV. You lose your sense of society. You are not living life.
From the mid-1990s, Michael Jordan set aside the hermit technique, refusing to “waste” precious days by remaining reclusive. An evolution which was allowed by a real work on himself, which he succeeded in accomplishing. And it’s much healthier that way.