Know your self beyond the game to be better within it
Do you know who you are beyond your role as an athlete? Far too often when I ask my clients this question they don't know. Their identity is fully or in large part based on their role as an athlete, and their value based on how well they do within it.
When this happens it can actually create many of the obstacles you face on your journey, such as fear of failure, perfectionism, or high levels of emotions. To be the best you can be within the game you must know who you are beyond it, so that you can be free to step into each situation and moment fully present and willing to be vulnerable within your performance.
If you let who you are be defined by your sports performance then you will carry an unnecessary amount of pressure to succeed. To help you not be defined by what happens in your sport it is important to expand your view of yourself. Here are three ways you can do so.
#1 Explore other activities of interests
It doesn't matter what form this takes, but look to have other things in your life beyond your sport that interest you and you're invested in. Things will happen on your sports journey, whether it is an injury, not being selected for a team or eventually retiring. If you have various interests it is easier to withstand what happens with your sports journey.
#2 Develop yourself as a person through sports
I think it is often forgotten that sports is a great place to develop yourself as a person. Long ago this was primarily what it was meant for. A place for young people to develop themselves for other things they would do down the line. You can use your time within your sport to develop yourself as a person. Think about how you can use your time within sports to grow beyond it. This could be teamwork, hard work, developing your attentional skills or how to manage emotions.
#3 You are more than what you do
Ultimately you are more than what you do, the roles you have, or the characteristics. There is apart of you that observes aspects of yourself, like your self talk, this is who you are at your core, and is where you tap into love, compassion, empathy, and joy. As an athlete you know this place as begin in the zone. This is who you are and the more you can tap into this part and let it be the driver, the easier it is to see you are more than the things you do, the thoughts you have or the emotions you feel.
You are more than just an athlete
No matter which direction you choose to take to help you expand your view of yourself, just make sure you start to do so while you are still on your journey. It will help tremendously for being the athlete you want to be now, but also for when the time comes to move beyond it. If you are interested in learning more about how I can help you on your journey as an athlete through developing your mental game and mindset, please contact me here.
To your success,
About: Kate Allgood is trained in the field of applied sport psychology. She holds two graduate degrees in psychology where she graduated with distinction. She has spent the past 12+ years working one on one with high school, college, Olympic, and professional athletes to help them with their mindset, mental performance and mental skills training. Kate has also been a consultant for professional teams, including the Anaheim Ducks primary minor league affiliate the San Diego Gulls, to help the team and players develop their mental game.