Leave your Goals at Home
Coaches and parents always tell us to keep our goals in mind when we go for a competition. Carrying your goals and expectations into a competition is one of the biggest mistakes any athlete can make. This is a big game and you want to win. You want to score a hundred, outrun your rival, score a hat-trick of goals. When you carry your goals into the competitive arena with you, chances are great that you will leave that performance with disappointment and heartache, and nothing more!
Expectations will weigh you down. Expectations will distract you from the performance and make your muscles tighten up. Want to perform to your potential when it counts the most? Then write your goals on a piece of paper before you leave for the game, match or race, and then leave that paper at home! Make a deal with yourself to let go off your goals. Expectations and goals should be your training partner, used to motivate you to work harder during practice and take your game to the next level. However, never take your goals and expectations into a competition. You will not perform to your potential!
Go into your competitions without any preconceived notions about the result. Forget the outcome! Instead, keep your focus on what you’re doing in the moment. Concentrate on the competition as it unfolds, moment by moment. Relax at every opportunity by breathing deep and letting go off the tension in your muscles. When you do this you’ll remain loose and relaxed. When you stay loose, you’ll perform to your capabilities. Goals and expectations are critically important for your overall motivation, and critically destructive when you carry them into a performance.