Thursday, 23 August 2012

How having a winning sports mindset can work in your business

The London 2012 Olympics was the first major sporting competition that I can recall that actually looked at how the mind can effect sports performance and talked about it so openly.  I thought this was great as coaching the mind is not just for when you have an issue it is very much about enhancing performance.  There were some great pieces on Sports Psychology and some great quotes from those that have been there and done it!

So what can we learn from these beliefs held by elite athletes that we can take into our own sporting or business arena.

'I don't own winning, I wanted to win' - Carl Lewis

'Top athletes perceive pressure as a privilege' - Tom Bates

'...pressure so high at that point, all things being equal it's the person who handles that moment and the pressure at that particular time best, that's going to have their best performance' - Michael Johnson

'I'm about to go to battle' - Michael Johnson

'Four years preparation for a few moments of action' - Matthew Syed

'Control the controllables' - Sir Matthew Pinsent

'You can only control how you perform' - Michael Johnson

'Thoughts become things and what we think affects the way we feel and the way we feel ultimately affects the way that we behave and ultimately in the sporting context - performance' - Tom Bates

'Find something that works for you' - Jonathan Edwards

'That minute difference between victory and defeat on the biggest stage of all is often to be found not in skill or effort but in the recesses of the mind' - Matthew Syed

Take a moment to think about a situation or activity you have coming up where you want to be at your best.  Pick a quote and think about your situation as if you hold that thought to be true - what does it tell you now about how you see and feel about the situation - what will you do differently?  What will you do the same?

Whether you are an athlete or in business, competing in any arena you needs to have mind and body working together and mental coaching techniques will help you achieve your goals and perform in the most competitive of environments.

The model below I use with athletes so they can see the different areas that coaching can work with - these are as relevant for business as they are for sport.

Now you may think overcoming injury is not very relevant to business but if someone feels injured this can have as devastating an effect on their work as an athlete being physically injured.

So what sports winning mentality will you have today?

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

How to Turn Inspiration into Participation....

With so many people feeling inspired by the Olympics you may be wondering where to start, so here is an extract from my e-book 'How to get off the Sofa and Start Running'.

Getting your mind in your run
"There are people who have no bodies, only heads. And many athletes have no heads, only bodies. A champion is a man who has trained his body and his mind"
- Coach Sam Dee The Olympian

However much your body might want to go for a run, if your mind isn’t interested it’s unlikely that you will get out the door.

We can be very good at talking ourselves out of doing something and so when you first start running it’s really good to think of some outcomes that you want to achieve.

You can break these down from your long term outcome and then smaller ones in order to keep you on track.

For instance a long term outcome maybe to take part in a race, do a particular time, fit into a particular pair of jeans.

Your short term outcomes can then be to run 3 times a week, to do a certain amount of mileage in a week, or spend a certain amount of time running each week.

Our brains work really well when it knows what we want to achieve and so if you have a good outcome in place this can help on those days it seems more tricky to get out the door!

To create a great outcome think about what you want to achieve and then build up a movie of it in your mind, what can you see happening when you have this outcome, what can you hear and how do you feel.  The more detail you can put into this visualisation the more compelling it becomes and the more likely you are to achieve it.

By building this vision at the beginning it can mean that on those odd days when you can’t be bothered you can bring this vision to the fore and it will help you get out the door.

I have a philosophy that on any given day running can be 10% physical and 90% mental.  If you are going to spend time training your body to do what you want it to do, surely the same thinking goes for training your brain!

And that’s not just for running…..

If you want to read the whole book which includes a 12 week plan you can order through:-