A head coach has to paint a positive image of the future or else no athlete will follow them. The reason? As a leader you want those who are taking the trip to the unknown with you to be operating with a peak mind. And one of the major ways of creating a peak mind within others is to manage their emotions by placing a positive hope in their mind through what you say. You must direct the athletes’ attention so that they don’t think that where they are now is what forever looks like.
I still read this wonderful book 177 Mental Toughness Secrets of the World Class by Steve Siebold and I haven’t been shy with sharing his insights in my blog posts and today is another one of those days. Here is what he says a world class person does.
Champions Thrive On World Class Self-Talk
“Repeat anything long enough and it will start to become you.” – Tom Hopkins, author, speaker
Self-talk is what we say to ourselves all day long, yet it’s also how we say it. For years, philosophers, psychologists and performance experts worldwide have known about the impact self-talk has on us. That being said, average performers are oblivious to what they are saying to themselves and how it’s affecting the quality of their lives. The pros have always been aware of the power of language in programming and reprogramming the human computer.
Dr. Shad Helmstetter, in his magnificent book, What to Say When You Talk to Yourself, writes that up to 77% of the average person’s self-talk is negative. According to Dr. Helmstetter, we spend our lives talking ourselves into and out of things. Champions believe and embrace this idea. As a matter of fact, the easiest way to know you’re in the presence of champions is to listen to them. The world class has spent years overcoming poor programming, and this process usually begins with the use of language, both with themselves and others.
The great ones believe almost anything is possible, simply because they have repeated that idea – and others like it – to themselves for years. To quote Dr. Helmstetter, “Repetition is a convincing argument.” Developing world-class self-talk may be the most powerful of all of the mental toughness secrets of the great ones. Like most of the habits, traits and philosophies in this book, it’s so simple that it’s often overlooked. As a result, amateur performers continue to perpetuate amateur language with themselves and others. Meanwhile, the great ones create ideas out of thin air, convince themselves achievement is possible, and then go out and make it happen.
As a leader, how do you talk?