Like many I enjoyed watching the Olympics this summer. Being an athlete and a coach makes me understand the importance of this moment for these elite athletes, the best in the world. As a spectator you have to be aware of the dedication and determination involved. For those who watched you witnessed the peaks and valleys of their performances. You’ve watched the elation of the wins and seen the tears of defeat. Who stands on the podium to receive the honours of the Bronze, Silver and the Gold Medal is determined by the people who are most prepared mentally and physically. The winner can be determined by as little as one hundredth of a second. There is the exhilaration of winning and the devastation of defeat experienced by all, athletes and observers. These athletes are driven by their goal to be the best and they commit to train many moment of the day for hours and hours, years and years with the hope that it will all pay off during the Olympics and bring them and their country a medal.
We can also be driven by goals. Some take the time to define them and then put an action plan in place to make it happen. Some give the commitment and some just give up during the process. As people strive towards their goals and dreams and there may be obstacles that get in the way, failure, heartbreak, injury and that is part of the journey. Being able to overcome these may not be easy and it’s those that stay focused and on track that do move forward and accomplish success. When obstacles or failure presents themselves it’s up to the individual to overcome it. The obstacles may be in the form of illness, fear, lack of resources-time or money or lack of confidence. When obstacles get in the way sometimes we need to revisit our plan of action or ask for help and support to help us achieve success. Being present and focused on the moment counts and taking one step at a time moves us closer to our goal so achievement can occur. Sometimes we focus too much on the outcome and lose sight of the task at hand which is an important part to achieving the goal. The task and performance at hand is what our focus should be on as that is what results in moving towards the goal and achieving it. Realizing that no goal is unrealistic but the timeline of our goal may be as things get in the way so the deadline you set may come sooner or it may come later.
Setting goals is part of life. Once you determine the outcomes you want to accomplish, make a plan and put it into action. Set goals that are realistic and that you are responsible for and own them. When you own them you are more likely to take the steps to achieve them. Always remember to celebrate and treat yourself along the way as that encourages you to continue your journey. It is important to recognize the efforts put in to achieving the goals. Acknowledge your efforts then reward them. Also learn to relax during the process as that helps keep you present and balanced. So if you get off track just breath, revisit your goals and refocus so you own your podium!
Celebrate your success and believe you can succeed.
Corey McCusker, Mental Performance Coach