What in your life do you want to create or experience?
In 1972 Barbara Ann Cochran won the gold medal for women’s slalom. Today she coaches other skiers on the mental side of the sport. I loved reading her advice this week because it so closely matches the advice I give myself and my clients on going for the dreams and goals that are calling to us.
Cochran tells skiers:
1. “It’s all about putting in your best effort. Don’t worry about results.”
2. “Build up your confidence by reminding yourself that ‘I can do this’”.
3. “Get what I call the inner climate into a good place emotionally. That is when you start thinking, This is so much fun, I just love — and then you fill in the blank.”
And then, Cochran tells the skiers to smile when they get to the beginning of the race. Smiling she says, “…helps to relieve that tension and it gets you in a really good place to start competing.”
There you go.
Great advice for your next big slalom race… or whatever big leap or little step is calling you.
Are you wanting to book your exhibit, submit your poem, apply for a grant, start a blog, start a business, quit a job, say no to a request, say yes to a crazy idea, start marriage counseling, run your first 5 K or…?
Imagine yourself, going for it like it’s your next Gold medal.
1. Put in your best effort. Focus on the process, on learning, on getting better and better and not on being perfect or achieving perfect outcome.
2. Say to yourself: “I can do this.” Say it when you are looking in the mirror, when you are exercising and whenever you find yourself beginning to worry about the outcome.
3. Pump up your enthusiasm by telling yourself, “This is fun! I love …”
These simple practices will help focus your attention, empower your nervous system and re-wire your brain for success.
And, unlike the brave athletes going for their Olympic goals so valiantly, you and I won’t have to wait another 4 years. Each day gives us many chances to play the game of life with courage, joy, grace and grit.
I'd love to hear from you. What is a goal or dream (big or little) that is calling you now? What happens for you when you try these tips?