Of all the skills required throughout the 5 Forces of Mental Mastery, Force 3, Self-control, is one that needs very little convincing of just how important this Force is.
Lots of athletes go very wrong in the thinking that self-control and discipline are something that you are born with, or you “just have it, or you don’t”.
Truthfully, this is a skill which can be learned and developed with the proper focus and training and easily made into habits.
A couple of things that the Self-Control Force will do for you:
1. Knowing and being able to recognize when things seem out of control during competition or training, as well as knowing when things are in perfect control.
2. Develop the power to have a release and a routine when the athlete realizes things are starting to feel out of control.
The question you may be asking yourself is, how is this supposed to translate into behaviors and skills to get me closer to my goals and objectives? That is really what it’s all about, right?
As you begin to train and develop the skill of Self Control, you will start to notice some vast changes and power that you have. You will have a much better understanding and are much more able to:
* Refocus when facing adversity or obstacles. Instead of letting one mistake spiral into many more, you can focus and get back and track quickly. * Have the ability to evaluate tough scenarios and make the most effective decisions. As your self-control improves, you will notice you start to make decisions objectively and much smarter, rather than just making emotionally based decisions. * You will begin to understand the importance of embracing the process, including the good and the bad, and realize these are all just an opportunity for growth, not defining moments of who you are or what you stand for. * The power of self-belief. By practicing the self-control aspect of your sport and personality you will begin to gain more confidence, start to believe in yourself more and start to realize that you are in full control of your situation and how you respond.
These things not only will help you in the short term but will have long lasting results for your future.
Why is this skill of Self-Control so important?
Did you know, that a good 50% of your results and the level in which you perform, come down to the mental performance factors. 50%!!! Think about that for a minute, half of your short, and long-term results for that matter, come down to how your mental state is throughout competition, training and more.
I have seen and even coached hundreds of athletes that had incredible talent and ability. Despite that, they continue to fall short of their peak. They quickly get labeled a “headcase” by some as they struggle under pressure. They simple don’t have the self-control or discipline to work through certain situations and due to this, when pressure builds up, they simply are unable to step up and often start to make mistakes and errors in these situations.
By training the Force of Self-Control, all this changes! Think of self-control and discipline like muscles, the more you exercise them, the stronger they become. You can become much better at this skill and with the training and practice you will dedicate to it; you will see great results.
Here’s a quick tip regarding improving your self-control during competition or training. Use the term “Flush It”, then move on to the next action.
When adversity hits on a play during competition you must learn to move past it immediately. This requires self-control and discipline. You can’t let one mistake lead to others, or effect your performance moving forward.
After a mistake or problem arises, tell yourself, “Flush It”. This is a verbal que that tells your mind to move on. You are taking that mistake and literally flushing it out of your mind. It doesn’t matter, it’s over and it no longer exists.
A great way to visualize this to imagine a brick wall. This is your brick wall that you built, it is the wall that represents adversity or mistakes that will come your way. In competition, we all make mistakes, it will happen, so think of this brick wall with hundreds and hundreds of bricks and when a mistake happens, you just are pealing a brick off this wall and flushing it. Its gone, it doesn’t matter anymore, the brick is gone, it doesn’t exist anymore and now you need to move on to the next action. No delay, on to the next play! The term “flush it” is a great verbal que that you can tell yourself to get over your mistakes, move on and moreover, create a valuable piece of the Self-Control Force you will need to become UNCONQUERABLE!