To be high performing athletes, we have to be incredibly aware. Aware of our position on the field, aware of what the opponent is doing, or aware of the situation going on around us. Improved awareness is critical to the technical, tactical, and physical performance! However, we often neglect the importance of awareness in helping us achieve a high level of success. By being aware of our thoughts, feelings, and behaviors, we can learn to identify, evaluate, and perhaps change those elements that are essential for our performance.
Our own internal thoughts can be our best friend or our worst enemy. However, in order for us to befriend our thoughts and use them strategically to help improve our performance, we must first become aware of the thoughts we have and their quality. To do this, we can simply take note of our thoughts after a performance. What was the content? Were they positive or negative? In what situation did they occur? Were they helpful or destructive?
Awareness of our emotional, as well as physical, feelings is especially helpful to our performance. Becoming aware of when we become frustrated or anxious can help us to better understand the triggers that bring on these feelings, which allows us to establish a game plan for dealing with these emotions in the moment. In addition, awareness of our physical state can allow us to increase our energy if we’re too relaxed, decrease our anxiety if we’re too panicky, and release muscle tension if we’re too tight. However, without awareness we would have little knowledge of the physical state we are in before it is too late.
What behaviors do you engage in that yield the greatest success? What things do you do that get in the way of you progressing? Awareness of what we do, why we do them, and their impact, can have huge implications for our performance. Ultimately we want to do more of what makes us perform better and less of what makes us not. Being aware of this helps us to make more informed and deliberate choices that can lead to better outcomes on and off the field.
Are you AWARE?