In life, as with any sport, you must train to be successful. You must have a team of people working with you, supporting you, challenging you, motivating you and training you. Who is your team in life? Who is your coach? What is your training strategy for life?
How do you prepare to overcome your perceived limiters of success? Exceptionally successful people are simply normal people who train mentally and physically.
We each know that physical training is necessary to develop new skills and new levels of performance.
What about mental limits to our success?
How do you develop emotional control, confidence and self sufficiency? You train for it.
You surround yourself with a team of people that is training for the same goal.
You find a coach or mentor, and in time you become your own coach.
Cognitive awareness, visualization and performance goal setting are mental skills that will be of use in other areas of your life.
Beyond getting better in sport, training this way makes you more fulfilled, productive and effective in life.
If you are training for an event like a 5K or 10K, you learn to stay focused on the task and push through the discomfort of trying something new or of “going hard.”
In a longer event, like a marathon, your mental task is to stay focused and push through the blocks that tell you to stop because of insecurity, fatigue, boredom — all the negativity that runs through your mind when times get tough.
Physical ability and technical skills are not enough to give you true fulfillment in sport or in life. A true sense of satisfaction and personal success requires optimal thinking, and that type of thinking doesn't happen by accident.
By training for life, you learn to break your ultimate goals into smaller ones. You learn to focus on developing mental tools that will help you overcome obstacles.
This type of training extends beyond the few hours you physically train and into the 20 or more hours a day when you’re not.
You might run for an hour, but what are you doing for the remaining 23 hours a day?
Is what you are doing mentally nurturing or hindering your development purposefully or inadvertently?
If you constantly told yourself you couldn’t run another mile, it is clear that you wouldn’t be able to run that next mile. The same is true in all aspects of life.
If you use negative self talk, can you really attain all that you want?
Negative self talk, not acknowledging the truths in your life and giving in to excuses, prove time and time again to be the biggest limiters of achievement.
Thoughts that scream “I can’t” or “I won’t” are vigilant. To train properly for life, you must be equally vigilant. Training your brain requires constant effort.
It requires acknowledging that you have a choice and then deciding to move toward self-acceptance, love and strength of will.
Training your mind is not for the faint of heart or those in need of instant gratification because negative self talk won’t go away easily and there will always be situations and people who can bring you down.
Training your mind is constant. You always need to make a conscious effort to focus on the positive instead of the negative, on the solutions rather than the tribulations, of the truth instead of the justification.
Training for life as a sport is challenging, but the benefits are substantial.
The benefits don’t just appear in running a 5K with your personal best time or crossing the finish line at a marathon.
The benefits stay with you when you face challenges with your loved ones or your friends. They are with you when you face adversity — and happiness.
Life is a sport. I’m in training. Train with me.