In sports as in life, people admire success. Often times success even becomes a measurement tool for one's overall self-worth in the world.
Unfortunately, this misinformed infatuation by society has lead to many athletes and individuals feeling unhappy and even as a failure when they fall short of reaching society's standard of success. More specifically, what I've encountered at SPMI is that the struggle of chasing success begins at a young age when the athlete starts gaining attention and recognition from his or her coaches, parents, team, and anyone around the sport.
One of the greatest mental battles athletes face is the ability to stay motivated and not give up when times get tough. Too often, athletes find themselves training less. One reason for this is due to a major shift in the athlete's perception of training and their goals.
This unproductive pattern looks something like this:
One of the most common issues athletes face is the overwhelming pressure that they feel before and during competition. Along with this pressure comes a shift in focus and an often fragile state of confidence. Many athletes then look for ways to improve their mental performance by asking how they can improve their confidence, stay more relaxed, and quiet the mind (avoid over-thinking). But the problem with many athletes goes beyond just the mental skills that they have not learned or mastered.