The article below may be designed for swimmers, but have a read and see if it can help all the other Dragons out there…
Those moments where you feel bewildered at the pool, when a competitor’s results leave you stupefied and discouraged, or when things keep piling on one after another, go back to the follwing three things:
1. Work Ethic.
No matter how fast the swimmer in the lane next to you is going, you will always be able to control how much effort you exert. I know how much it stinks to have a swimmer next to you suddenly dart out ahead and above what you thought they were capable of.
But does that mean you throw in the towel? Oh, hell no.
Here are a few simple ways to develop a tough-minded work ethic so that when things don’t go according to plan you can stay calm and focused—
- Refuse to procrastinate.
- Keep your word; if you say you are going to do something, do it.
- Make doing a good job habitual. Aristotle had it right when he said that excellence was a habit. When you make excellence routine, something you just do, then it extends to every part of your life, and every part of your swimming.
The way that we think and feel about things feeds into how we act. If you are second guessing a set, and telling yourself that it’s going to be too hard, and that you don’t feel like it, than your body will follow suite. If, on the other hand, you tell yourself that it’s a challenge, an opportunity to see what you can do, your body will again follow the lead of your thoughts.
Here are some simple ways to develop a better attitude–
- Encourage your teammates during practice and competition.
- Be coachable.
- Willing to find the silver linings in setbacks and failures.
- Root for your teammates to succeed.
- Not complaining or looking for someone to blame when things stink.
- Not getting caught up in other people’s negativity.
When things are getting hectic, between school, social commitments, and obviously swimming, it can be easy to start feeling overwhelmed. Generally this happens when we try to deliver our attention into multiple directions at once, and when this fails to generate any meaningful results, we grow exasperated and sense as though we are in over our heads.
To get things back in focus and back on track, dial down your tasks and set to one thing at a time. Plan and manage your tasks so that you are giving your utmost attention to each one at a time. Doing so will give you that sense of control and power over your life and put you back in the driver’s seat.
Here are some easy ways to generate more focus in your swimming and life:
- Measure and track your progress.
- Set daily/weekly/monthly goals to keep yourself on task.
- Break your big goals into small, bite-sized pieces.
- Drive all of your attention into one thing at a time.