vida mind – mental conditioning – mental training – sport psychology
Australia – Melbourne – Sydney – Adelaide – Canberra – Brisbane
How does one release the past and move on? When overly concerned about past or future, one strategy is to get more involved in what you do, your game, your action, your movement. No matter what the outcome, our anxiety is lessened with participation. But sometimes we try to bury our pain, stress and anxiety in action rather than compassionately, gently attending to it. In sport, as well as in life, to escape or to repress is common. However, pain from mistakes or failure is one of our most important teachers. It’s important to know that effective action also embraces awareness of one’s own weaknesses, fragility, vulnerability. Such compassion for ourselves normally makes us less destructive toward others and gives us strength to heal ourselves through action – the right action. Adressing the causes of past pain or doubt helps to reduce worry about the future and increases our effectiveness in the present. Then, healing comes from the ability to assimilate, aknowledge and learn from past mistakes and traumas, while also making room for growth to occur.
As soon as you remember to put your attention on your breath or to observe your thoughts, you call yourself into the present.
What to do? Planing for the future and analysing the past are often just excuses to distract you from your fear of failing. So, to bear witness to one’s thoughts and emotions is to be in the present moment. As soon as you remember to put your attention on your breath or to observe your thoughts, as if they were clouds drifting across the sky, you call yourself into the present. Of course you won’t do it every time because this takes considerable focus, since the mind is accustomed to running the show. Even when your thoughts continue to come while you compete, witness them, then they can no longer dominate you. This will bring you into the present.
Balance is found by alternating between no-thought stilness and constructive thoughtfulness. As we all experienced it on the court, on the field, in any competition, over attachment diminishes presence. The quality of your game, of your performance will improve when you’ll find the stillness between thoughts, making space for not knowing, and pay attention to the moment.
Yes, it requires courage to be honest with ourselves, to set aside the things we think we know, the opinions that anchor us to our current circumstance and start to see what IS. Cultivating the present moment takes intention and dedication. In the process, don’t be surprised, presence comes and goes, often slipping in and out of momentary awareness. In addition, in presence there is a natural relaxation – but in the transition away from what we think we know – the letting go – fear and doubt frequently arise. It could be scary. But that’s when you need to keep going, to keep working on dropping and letting go what you don’t need, what stopping you to be YOU.