There is nothing more detrimental to an athlete's performance than the constant inner chatter such as, "What if I mess up? or I can't do it because..." Having one's frame of mind clear and ready to go is more than half the battle of doing your absolute best. Learn how to reprogram your mind through positive autosuggestions, visualize effectively, and release built-up nervous energy. Are you ready to take your performances to a new and heightened level?
Things You Will Need
*the willingness to change your current pre-competition habits
*a pen and paper
*a quiet and distraction-free room
The subconcious mind is an impressionable storage compartment, taking in whatever your thoughts and emotions feed it, good or bad. Therefore, wouldn't it make sense to nourish it with possitive affirmations? These optimistic statements within one's head are called autosuggestions. If you input these encouraging autosuggestions into your subconcious, then the direct result is a positive output. Here are some generic examples followed by more specific: "I will shock the world!", "I am powerful and fierce!", "I am cool and calm." (generic), "My swing is smooth.", "My strides are quick!", "My soul feels the music." (specific). Think about what refran or saying would work for you. Keep the statement short, but also strong and percise. Say and reiterate to yourself these affirmations whenever nervous and negative energies arise. This technique will help filter out the useless jargon in your mind. During the autosuggestions, it's imperative to be purposeful and passionate with your words. By doing this, it allows your subconcious mind to more easily extract the thoughts from your concious mind. Your mind is hungry; feed it with positive and influential thoughts.
Throughout your entire pre-competition or presentation practices, it's deemed crucial to incorportate visualization to help enhance your performances. According to many world-class atlethes, including myself, visualization is another means to practice or train ones skills within a sport. The following is the most effective practices for visualization: Choose a quiet, distraction-free room to perform the visualizations. Assume a comfortable position (sitting down or standing up.) Take the time to relax your mind by breathing in three mindful breaths. Now think of a section within your routine or presentation that you would like to practice. Allow both your mind and sensations of your body (muscle memory) to feel or sense the movements. Initially, run through these movements in your mind at a slow, but steady and even cadence. Increased visualization practices will lead its way to a more realistic pace. If your mind stalls on a particular section of your routine, just allow yourself to consistently stride ahead through the motions, again with an even pace.
Step 3The next exercise is the clincher to your success. Within a quiet room, sit down and allow your mind to slow down the inner chatter. Focus on your breathing-- in and out-- allowing yourself to feel the inhales and exhales on your lips. Once your mind is open and clear, you are ready. Pick up a pen and begin to scribble, with abandon, on a piece of paper. Continue this practice until you feel that all your nervous energy has transferred from you, through the pen, and onto the piece of paper. As soon as your mind feels empty and cleansed, you may partake in the final step: Think of any positive thought that comes to mind and record it onto the same paper. Keep these thoughts brief, but powerful, similar to the autosuggestions from above. When you've finished writing, say and repeat (with sincere belief) these statements until you believe them whole-heartedly. Allow yourself to reference these affirmations whenever you need a mental boost leading up to the competition or presentation; they are your security blanket. Take control of your performances by feeding your mind with positive thoughts, visualizing sections of your routine, and letting go all that stress and anxiety. Behold, the performances of your life time are right in front of you; seize them!
Tips & Warnings
-Surround yourself with positive people, and avoid those that are neagative.
-Eat healthy and give yourself enough rest and relaxation (do not sleep too much; this can make your muscles feel lax or lazy.)
-Allow yourself to go out and have fun from time to time; this will help keep things in perspective.
-Practice as if you were competing.