Self Talk and Its Impact on Confidence
Confidence is something you want, you know it helps you be at your best, and you know when it is gone sometimes it is hard to find. Often times athletes look for confidence in their results, waiting for things to turn around to then feel confident. When this is the case, you are always chasing, needing that next good result, and once it is done, you look for the next one. What happens if you could be confident in yourself, no matter what is happening in your external world?
One of the core elements of confidence is self trust. This will mean different things to different people, but in essence it is the ability to trust that you will be able to handle what comes your way and figure it out. That you don't need the answer now for something in the future, you can be truly present in a moment, and not need to know what will be next or happen next. To trust that what skills or information you need will be there when you need it, and if you get information that there is some things to work on you go do so. Trust is not about being perfect or needing outcomes to look a certain way.
One of the greatest hindrances to self trust is your self talk and all the judgment that comes along with it. It pulls you out of the now and into the past or future. It creates self doubt, fear, worry and negativity. These thoughts aren't you, but you let them become you and your reality. The confidence you need is within you, but you let the noise of your self talk and the external world block out that trust in your self. You most likely know what it feels like to truly trust yourself. If you have ever been in the zone, that is it. Your self consciousness falls away, you are truly present, and in each moment, and let each moment unfold without a need to look ahead or behind.
The confidence and self trust you are looking for lies within you, but you are constantly searching outside of yourself for it, and therefore always chasing. It doesn't mean there won't be tough days or challenges, but can you still trust yourself? Knowing it is not always going to look the way you want or expected, but that doesn't mean you are any less skilled or can't trust yourself. If there are steps to take to get better, trust that you will be able to figure out what they are and then put what you need to into doing them. One step at a time. Trust that you can take each step, you are not going to take all the steps at once. Can you be fully present with each step, and trust that when the next steps presents itself you can be fully there, and will pull from you what you need. If you are unsure, again remind yourself this is what you do when you are in the zone. You know how well you perform in that space of consciousness.
Your self talk often gets in the way of being in each moment. Learn to use it to help guide you back to each moment and to remove judgement from it. To accept what is, and if there is an action step to take, to take it.
To your success,
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Kate Allgood Masters Sport Psychology (with distinction) Masters General Psychology (with distinction) Sports Hypnosis Certification Mindfulness Certification
TAIS Assessment Certified