Ups and downs are a given when it comes to our motivation levels. According to a relatively recent study conducted in the United States, nearly two thirds of adults who make New Year’s resolutions, set themselves fitness goals, and a whopping 73% of those eventually give up on them. Whatever the reasons behind quitting, they all have one underlying factor. Motivation!
We’re all faced with obstacles whatever our road to achievement entails, but in order to hurdle over them, we need to be motivated to do so. Sports psychology’s prevalence has rapidly grown within sport in recent years, with early adopters like The British Cycling team, crediting the practice for their Olympic success. Training Motivation: 3 Superb Tips I Learned from Sports Psychology!
It is defined as the study of how psychology (our minds) influence sports, athletic performance, exercise, and physical activity. So how can we use Sports Psychology for training motivation in our own lives? As a Sports Psychology graduate, I want to share with you, some key psychological strategies that have helped me to remain driven and focused within all aspects of my life.
It’s a common misconception that anxiety is a negative feeling. However, how you respond to anxiety depicts its influential behavior. If we experience feelings of anxiety towards a specific event in our lives, then it shows that we value the importance of succeeding in that moment.
‘Fail to prepare, prepare to fail’. Anxiety gives us the opportunity to plan, practice, and prepare, whilst the need to succeed can be used as motivation to put as much work into the task as possible and perform at our best. Anxiety should be embraced and coming through such key moments in life will undoubtedly aid your development.
2. Goal Setting
So you might want to lose some weight, exercise more, or put some of your fantastic ideas into action, but with no clear pathway, you’re sure to get lost on your way. Goal setting is a powerful tool that can help you map out your route to training motivation success in a carefully considered way.
Using the SMART principle to set yourself short, medium, and long-term goals gives you milestones to aim for and a checklist to monitor your progress. Reward yourself for every target achieved and set challenging tasks to propel you towards your ultimate goal. Breaking goals down into bite-sized chunks makes them more digestible and frequent success’ will boost your self-confidence and sense of achievement as well.
3. Secret Keys to Gain that Winning Edge: Positive Self-Talk & Visualization
Think about a time you endured a seemingly impossible workout. Was your inner voice saying “I can’t” repeatedly? Positive self-talk is a tool we can use to motivate ourselves when the going gets tough. Instead, tell yourself “I can do this”, “I’ve got this”, “There’s only 2 rounds to go”. I promise, you will be surprised at how much this can impact the way you perceive the challenge in front of you.
So, you’ve conjured up a brilliant idea and you’re already dreaming about the millions you could potentially earn. This is known as visualization and if utilized well, can act as a magnificent motivational boost to get you to put your thoughts into action.
Take Home Message
No one chooses to do something without a source of motivation, and without maintaining our own motivation levels, it won’t be long until we toss aside our plans for world domination! It’s our responsibility to keep ourselves motivated, but using such psychological tools as I have in my own life, will continuously drive you toward success.