If you’re reading this, you’ve probably already tasted some success, and are probably among the top 10% or 20% in your chosen sport. However, how can you build upon the successes you’ve had to really make a significant mark in your sport – to truly stand out from the crowd and leave a legacy as a champion. There have been many talented sportspeople with huge potential – and yet they have not lived up to that potential over time.
Your psychology and your thinking strategies make the difference between someone who just has ‘potential’, and the person who actually grabs that potential with both hands and makes full use of it in their lives.
So – are you going to become more than just a gifted athlete with lots of potential? I challenge you to actually become outstanding – to become someone who makes a significant contribution to their sport, and to our society.
So, before reading any further, take a few moments to think, now, about what significant achievement you’d like to attain…. then I will take you through a process for how you can actually make it happen.
I’ve been fortunate to assist with two Olympic Gold medalists, hundreds of national champions and thousands of outstanding athletes and coaches over the past 25 years, and what has absolutely fascinated me is – how does someone take an idea, a wish to say win an Olympic gold medal or a national championship…. and actually make it happen? What are the keys which allow someone to take a dream and turn it into reality?
I suggest there are 12 important principles, or keys, – and I use the word SIGNIFICANCE as an acronym to explain these.
Let’s go through them – and as we do, I encourage you to apply each principle to your own dream of significance.
S – State Positively and Precisely What You Want
It’s important to know exactly what you want and to focus on what you want, rather than what you DON’T want. Our attention is like a missile guidance system – whatever you focus on, you will move towards. Making your desire precise helps use your unconscious resources to help with the goal, rather than just your conscious will power.
I – Important Reasons
Reasons generally come before actions – rarely does anyone do anything without a ‘reason’. So find powerful reasons to achieve what you know exactly what you want want…. rather than excuses NOT to do it! Too often we get caught up in the inevitable challenges and difficulties in our way. However the way to overcome these is to have compelling enough reasons. Write down now half a dozen powerful reasons WHY you want to achieve your goal, and what will it cost you if you DIDN’T achieve it?
G – Turn into Goals
Goals are dreams with a deadline….. and an action plan. WHEN do you want to achieve this by? It’s been shown that most people OVERestimate what they can do in 6 months or a year, but UNDER-estimate what they can do in 5 or 10 or 20 years. What is the FIRST STEP? Identify some small thing you can do tonight that will immediately start you on the journey…. And do it!
N – Non-Comparative with Others
Compare how you are today with how you were yesterday, and how you want to be tomorrow. Your competitors are simply yardsticks by which you chart your OWN progress from the past…. to the present…. to the future.
I – Intrinsic Motivation
Do it FOR YOURSELF. Because this is what is in your heart – your heart driven, passion driven desire…. because you LOVE it.
F – Future Self Reference Point
We have a fascination with, and an attachment to, our personal history that is totally unwarranted, and in my opinion, mostly detrimental and limiting to achieving our highest potential. You are NOT just a consequence of the past, but a pre-sequence of a future self who wants to come into being. Use this Future You as a new ‘reference point’ for decisions/beliefs about yourself, and allow this future self to become your own ‘inner coach’ and mentor. Most people think they are locked into being a consequence of their past – and it is a seductive belief and can seem very real…. but this is just a default setting on your personal computer. You CAN engage your INTENTION by establishing a relationship with your desired future self – then the past becomes irrelevant, and the future draws you towards itself.
I – Imagine it Happening
Engage the most powerful force in the Universe – your imagination – to ENVISAGE it happening. Just think, if you took just 30 seconds first thing in the morning and 30 seconds last thing at night, and used this time to picture what you wanted…. to kindle the flame of your creative power to INTEND the result you want. If you did that every day for the next six months, do you think that would have an impact? You better believe it will!!
C – Congruent with Your Core Values
There is power in connecting the surface goal you are wanting with the driving core value underneath. We rarely identify the real goal we are actually chasing. People don’t want money, or relationships, or possessions…. they want to experience the CORE VALUES those things represent: e.g. security; love; intimacy; freedom; independence; happiness; etc. You can identify your underlying values by using an “outcome chain”: Ask yourself “What will this give me that is even MORE important?”
A – Achievable
What you want needs to be achievable – but how do you know? Only YOU can know. As a general rule, if you can’t SEE yourself doing it / achieving it, you probably won’t. If you can’t ‘see’ it happening, break the goal down to smaller chunks until you can.
N – Never Give Up Mindset
Develop a mindset of PERSISTENCE. Persistence is more powerful than skill or intelligence or good looks. Persistence can get you just about anything you want. How do you develop persistence? Persistence is a mental process which focuses on solutions. Ask yourself : “How CAN I do such and such, or achieve this?”, and expect an answer. Your brain is designed as an answer-seeking mechanism, use it wisely. Most people get stuck because they ask the wrong questions.
C – Commit
How do you commit? Establish a routine – something small – and do it every day.
E – Ecology Check
The main reason people don’t achieve a specific goal or dream is resistance or sabotage from within themselves. Check for objections WITHIN yourself and WITHOUT from others close and/or important to you or the goal. Are there any ‘down’ sides? Are you willing to pay the price? Is it worth it? If objections, find a way to either modify the goal, or build a solution to the objection into the process.
About Jeffrey Hodges B.Sc.(AES) M.Sc.(Hons)
Jeffrey Hodges is a performance consultant to elite athletes, sporting teams and corporate clients. He is the author of the widely acclaimed “Sportsmind – An Athlete’s Guide to Superperformance Through Mental & Emotional Training” and “Champion Thoughts, Champion Feelings”; creator of the Sportsmind performance enhancement workshops and audio tapes; and Director of the Sportsmind Institute for Human Performance Research.
He is a NLP Master Practitioner and Associate Trainer, and his Sportsmind programs have been endorsed by the NSW Dept Sport & Recreation, and recommended by top sportsclubs and successful athletes. Jeffrey has competed in many sports, notably Volleyball, Squash, Soccer and Golf, and currently trains in Aikido, holding a black belt.
Some of his clients to date include :
Australian Rugby Union
St. Joseph’s College
Woodlands Golf Club
Financial Institutions Remuneration Group (FIRG)
Network for Fitness Professionals
North Sydney and Penrith Rugby League Clubs
Qld. Athletics Assn
NSW Netball Assn
Northern Inland Academy of Sport
Victorian Soaring Assn
Orange Agricultural College Equestrian School
Qld and NSW Departments of Sport and Recreation
Qld Academy of Sport
and the RAAF.
For more information, contact :
SPORTSMIND , 77 FLAXTON MILL ROAD
FLAXTON Qld. Australia. 4560.
PHONE 61 7 5445 7994
email : firstname.lastname@example.org
website : www.sportsmind.com.au