When asked to evaluate our ability to perform a specific task, most of us can easily rate ourselves. We either think of a scale (1 to 10) or compare ourselves with other individuals (better than Tom, not as good as Bill). The interesting part of our self-rating mechanism is that we usually think of our performance level as being at a fixed point.
Looking a little closer and evaluating several of your performances together, you begin to realize that your ability and capacity to execute actually move up and down a scale. The range on this scale varies based on a many factors. When everything is aligned correctly you may be able to perform at the upper level of your ability. On the other hand, if you suffer a setback during competition or personal issues are distracting you, you most likely will perform at the lower end of that scale.
The reason why physical training and skill practice are not enough to make you a successful performer is that they are only concern, with raising the upper limit of your performance scale. They only create the potential to perform at a higher level. This part of your training needs to be complemented with the learning and mastering of the mental skills required to keep you in that upper limit on a consistent basis.
Most of the time we think of a performance or mental coach as somebody who can help resolve major issues that are stopping an individual for realizing his potential. This perception misses the mark, because in reality we all have circumstances, personal characteristics or issues that impact our ability to focus during practice and to do our best during competition. It is here where the help of a coach is valuable. A coach can partner with you to identify and handle the list of smaller things that rob you of the opportunity to leverage the results of your practice and skill development.
There is a reason why highly successful individuals continue to work with performance coaches. They know that learning how to make the most of every practice and being capable of handling different circumstances during competition will be the difference between winning or losing on the field.
Most importantly many of those individuals have become successful by working throughout their careers with their performance coaches. They have made sure that they were able to leverage as much as possible the skills and physical abilities that they were developing.
How about you? Do you feel that you are getting the most of your current practice? Do you know that you are not leaving anything on the table when it comes to performing at your highest possible level day, in and day out?
If you have any questions on this or any other mental performance topics, hit me in the comments or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Your Peak Performance Coach