“To achieve great things, you have first to believe it.” – Arsene Wenger
Not all training sessions go well, and not all competitions go your way. As the saying goes, you can’t win ’em all, but to be a champion athlete, you must approach each training session and every competition with a positive attitude and belief that you are a champion in the making.
To be a winner, you must think like a winner.
If you’re standing on the start line, about to run the race of your career, and the thoughts in your mind are focused on all the things that didn’t go well in preparation and the disastrous results of the last race you ran, you’ve lost the race before you even begin. The thoughts in your mind influence the way you feel, and a poor emotional state will lead to a poor performance.
Studies have demonstrated a clear link between the way an athlete feels about themselves and the way they perform, and research in the field of sports psychology has shown that an athlete’s potential performance can be traced through something known as the success cycle.
If the cycle begins with a positive self-image, this generates a positive attitude. A positive attitude leads to positive expectations which, in turn, leads to improved behaviour, and the positive behaviour leads to an enhanced performance. Performing well, irrespective of whether it’s a winning or losing result in competition, ensures a positive attitude is maintained, and the success cycle continues.
A positive emotional state will lead to a positive performance.
Take a moment to consider the effect of beginning the cycle with a negative self-image. If you don’t feel good about yourself, you don’t feel confident about your abilities, so you become the person standing on the start line with a head full of negative thoughts – you don’t believe in your potential to succeed.
To think like a winner, you must believe in your potential to win, but you can’t win ’em all. With a positive attitude, success is making every effort a best effort. Ex-tennis champion Jimmy Connors perhaps put it best when he said, “I think my greatest victory was every time I walked out there, I gave it everything I had. I left everything out there. That’s what I’m most proud of.”
The success cycle doesn’t revolve around winning, it revolves around believing in yourself as a winner. Are you thinking like a winner?
Don MacNaughton is a High Performance Coach and has worked tirelessly to help clients achieve success in the world of sport and business over the past 15 years. The next, highly popular, NLP Diploma and Life Coaching Certificate course starts in April 2019. Click here for more information or to sign up.