Getting yourself to shut down your brain and be ‘mindless’ isn’t always easy. Especially in those game defining moments, or when your team members are psyching themselves up in the locker room pre-match, or when you’re coming off the field pumped up and running high on adrenaline. And really, why would you want to switch off, calm down and become ‘mindless’?
The answer is simple. Sometimes, your brain gets in the way of your sport. Sometimes, when you’re too excited, too pumped up, too distracted, it can be to your detriment. Athletes who aren’t in control of themselves and their mental toughness start to over-think their movements within their sport. Or the opposite can even be true where an athlete doesn’t think enough about their actions and does something they later regret, like speak to the media after a game when their head isn’t in the right post-game space yet. Entering your game or race, and even finishing it, with a clear, focused mind can actually help you achieve success.
So how do you do this? How do you calm yourself and get your head in the game? How do you become mindless?
There are a number of ways to achieve mindfulness but it all comes down to an athletes’ ability to gain control of themselves. Because this is the one thing athletes DO have control over – themselves. Nothing else is certain. When you master the ability to take control of yourself, you gain the upper hand in your sport and this leads to increased success. And to learn how to gain control of yourself, you must be disciplined in honing your mental skills and your mental toughness.
If you want to know more about how to help your athletes gain control and achieve a state of mindfulness, you should check out our program – ATHLETE TOUGH. Our Handbook & Video Series was produced by 4 x Olympian and 3 x Olympic Medalist, Bo Hanson, to answer the call of Coaches wanting to know how they can build mental toughness in their athletes. We have dedicated an entire chapter to this subject, but that’s not all. You can learn more about Conditioning Toughness, Building a Tough Identity, Staying Tough Under Pressure and more with 15 chapters full of proven strategies to help your athletes become, and stay, ATHLETE TOUGH. Visit this link for more information and to view a sample chapter and video!
Where to from here?
If you want to read more on mental toughness and becoming ATHLETE TOUGH, we recommend the following articles.