Nothing heralds the start of the summer holiday season for me as much as the Wimbledon tennis championships.
When I was an impoverished student in London, I was lucky enough to work at Wimbledon for two consecutive years. Two weeks of serving expensive, fancy food to well-heeled guests and being paid well to do so plus the opportunity to watch matches from the greats such as McEnroe and Borg. It fostered a lifelong love for tennis.
So, I have made time to watch this year’s tournament. I am especially interested as I am currently working with a top sportsman to improve his mindset and I also have a podcast with former Team GB Olympian/Commonwealth medal holder Chris Cook.
Great sportspeople have much in common. So, what can we learn from their success?
Well, it is all about competition and being able to beat an opponent but the common and key issue is that to win you must compete with yourself.
It is said that in golf your only real opponent is you. Harvey Penick is regarded by many as the (accidental) forefather of sports psychology. His inspirational ‘Little Red Book: Lessons and Teachings from a Lifetime in Golf’ started out as a notebook of things that he learned about golf over the years. Much of it is about life rather than golf techniques. Most of it is about attitude. He speaks about confidence and also not losing your faith repeatedly.
This is what marks out the champions at Wimbledon. Their ability to come back when down and, as the commentators say repeatedly, to reset their mindset.
If you watch the excellent movie ‘King Richard’ about Venus and Serena Williams you learn that their success was as much to do with the way they were trained to have a positive mental attitude as it was with their skillset and fitness.
To create good brain health and positive mental strength you have to get out of your way and find a new way.
Firstly, you need to remind yourself why you are aiming for and working hard to achieve your goal. Why is it important? Who is it important for? Perhaps it is important to get a promotion at work to provide more for your family? Or to make your parents proud perhaps? You know your own motivation so write it down and remind yourself of it regularly.
Secondly, a sporting champion visualises success so you must visualise your goal. If it is a house with a beautiful garden then find some photos of houses you love and print them out. If it is a new car then find the one you want and print that picture out too. Get a piece of hard card and some paper glue and stick the pictures together. Add-in all the other things you desire. Now you have our own vision board. Put it somewhere that you can see it every day. The mind cannot distinguish between what you see and is real and what you imagine and is desired.
Whatever we think about we bring about. This underpins all winning mindsets. This is why Roger Bannister broke the four-minute mile record. He saw himself passing that finish line in under four minutes hundreds of times before running the race.
There will be setbacks on the road to success.
You may even stumble and fall but you will reset and refocus much more easily when, like a champion, you visualise your goal and remind yourself of why you want it.
To chat further about this or find out more about the coaching and RTT therapy I offer a discovery call – https://rosalynpalmer.com/contact