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07 Aug, 2012

The Olympics Are Here! What Can You Learn From Top Athletes?

Posted by: The Coaching Academy In: Coaching Articles

The Olympics Are Here! What Can You Learn From Top Athletes?


We are into the second week of the Olympics and we have seen some amazing action thus far. The Great British Team  have surpassed expectations and gave us six golds in one day!

A lot has been written about what we can learn from top athletes; one of the most revealing classic studies was described in Scientific American Mind Magazine.

The study revealed that athletes who qualified for the Olympics had the same levels of anxiety and doubt as their less successful peers. The difference was that the Olympians were better at constantly encouraging themselves.

You have to develop both skill and stamina, and you are bound to develop setbacks. By adopting the techniques used by athletes, you can also increase your chances of winning

Here are six ways to learn from the world of successful athletes in your marketing efforts:

1. Pace yourself. Set small goals to work toward. Nobody establishes a reputation overnight; they do it article by article, speech by speech, interview by interview, blog post by blog post.

2. Reward yourself for reaching milestones. Have a little celebration when you reach key points in your marketing campaign.

3. Make a list of your previous successes. When you doubt that you’re going to achieve your current goal, it’s useful to remember times in the past when you have succeeded. Probably this is something you recommend to clients, but are you doing it yourself?

4. Get and give support. Find a coaching buddy or group so you can get constructive feedback, help when you’re stuck, and general encouragement.

5. Become aware of your self-talk. If you are saying negative things to yourself, consciously stop and change to positive statements – another one you may be recommending but forgetting to do.

6. Taking a leaf from the book of Olympic athletes, accept that anxiety and doubt are a natural part of the process, not a sign that you should give up.

2 Responses to "The Olympics Are Here! What Can You Learn From Top Athletes?"

1 | Graham White

August 10th, 2012 at 9:47 am


All of the most successful athletes have a clear understanding of their long term objective. The methods listed contribute to minimising deviations from the right path.

Steve Peters’ book ‘The Chimp Paradox’ describes the model he has taught the British Cycling team to use to manage their anxieties. Turning a negative episode around is not easy if you do not know and have practised the techniques. Steve, a clinical psychologist, has said that he used to have to spend over an hour with one of the cyclists but after years of practise that cyclist can now overcome sudden doubts and anxieties in about 5 minutes.

2 | Carmen Gilfillan

August 12th, 2012 at 1:24 pm


Point 6 is extremely important: those who are successful learn to work with or through anxiety, doubt and fear. Many of the athletes interviewed after their races said how nervous they were in the moments before starting. But they still competed, and some of them went on to win medals.
As an EFT coach I believe that part of success is understanding that anxiety and fear have vital roles to play in our development, and are often there to give us the adrenaline we need to drive ourselves forward.

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