Wednesday, February 20, 2013
Psychology beats physiology, EVERY time.
I'm constantly reminded of this quote that I first heard from Alywyn Cosgrove years ago. It holds true with almost everything that I do. This simple statement dictates whether or not you will fail, or succeed.
Let me give you an example.
Let's say that you were going for a run. You have been doing a lot of sprinting lately, and you are trying to beat your 400m time. You lace up, grab your stopwatch, and go outside. Starting line. You imagine yourself pushing hard, and as soon as you hit that button on your stopwatch, you take off like a rocket. You pump your arms, drive your legs up and manage to run it in 1:03. Awesome. Your lungs burn and you can feel your heart in your neck.
Now, let's say you take that same scenario, and set it up as a race. There you are on the starting line, with 7 other sprinters. You can feel that same heart beat in your neck before the race even starts. BOOM! Gun fires, you run. The crowd fuels you, and you push past the other runners to come out on top. You finish in 56 seconds. Awesome! That's far past your personal best. But, what has changed? Your training was the same, but now there was a much larger psychological factor involved.
Next. You are walking down the street. About 400 meters ahead of you, you see an accident happen (you have amazing eyes, relax) and you hear a woman scream about her child. Dressed in street clothes you sprint as fast as you can to the scene of the accident to see if there is anything that you can do. You get to the scene of the accident in 50 seconds. How? You aren't even wearing your training clothes? Your dress shoes have as much support as a bath mat. How now, can you beat even your race time? Psychology. It was even more of a factor.
Last one. You are hiking in the woods. It's a gorgeous day. You see a camp set up 400 meters ahead of you. You start to walk briskly towards camp when all of a sudden you hear something behind you. You turn to see a massive grizzly bear about 100 meters away from you, and he looks hungry. You drop your gear, ignore all running form and scream like Chris Tucker all the way to the camp. You barely close the door behind you when you hear the bear growling at your feet. WAY too close. But, you just ran a 400 meter, on rough terrain, in 44 seconds, while flailing your limbs. Was psychology a factor? A bear almost ate you, of course it was.
I want everyone to stop talking themselves out of pushing their bodies. Push your limits, and you will notice those limits become non-existent. If you are worried about an activity, or something at work, imagine how you will feel once you complete it, close your eyes and IMAGINE yourself completing it. Chances are, the anticipation of the activity, is much worse than the activity itself. And, if you keep building it up, and building it up, it becomes an impossible monster that you will always talk yourself out of doing.
Pick one thing this week that is bothering you, close your eyes, and take a few minutes to complete it in your head. Now, make that a reality.