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How Athletes Beat Fear

By Alex On October 23, 2010 Under Sports Training

Just a few days ago, we talked about the problem of NOT believing in yourself, playing with fear in your heart and how crushing it can be to ANY player in “The Secret ALL Athletes Fear.

At the end of that article, I asked you how your life would be different if you ALWAYS believed in yourself and NEVER felt any fear… And you responded. Big-Time. With 100+ Comments.

So much so in fact that it caught the eye of a very good friend of mine, Todd Herman.

Now if you don’t know Todd, get on it — he’s devastatingly brilliant.

A Sports Psychologist to Pros, Olympians, Celebrities and amateur athletes worldwide, Todd saw “The Secret ALL Athletes Fear” and really dug what he was reading about…he dug it so much in fact that he called me on Friday and VOLUNTEERED himself to write a brand-new article about dealing with and beating fear, to follow it up (of course I said “yes”).

So HERE is that article right below.

My recommendation: Read it closely…this is the type of stuff top athletes would read twice to make sure they got it all.

And I know I promised you I’d reveal to you my BEST tip for overcoming self-doubt and I’m not reneging on that — not even close. In fact, I have a special announcement for you about that at the end of Todd’s article.

So read the article, then check out the surprise I have for you. Enjoy! -Alex”

How To Beat Fear

“You’re never playing an opponent, you’re only really playing against yourself.” ~Arthur Ashe

After 8+ years of working with athletes from all over the world on the ‘inner game’, I can tell you that quote is as true as true can be.

Before we go any further I’m going to make a few assumptions:

  1. You have a love for the sport you play,
  2. You feel like you have more potential than your results show,
  3. You battle with worrying about things you can’t control and no matter how hard you practice you can’t seem to shake the negativity.

Well, I’m going to show you a few things today.

First, where doubt and fear come from. This is important because you’ll have a new way of looking at it, so it’s not the big scary beast that stops you from reaching new heights. Second, the mistakes you’re making that cause fear. And, third, some tips you can start using today, so you’ll begin to become the player you’re meant to be.

So let’s get started:

What is Fear?

 

Fear is actually an emotion that was originally meant to protect us. You see, thousands of years ago it was just us wandering the fields, plains and mountains of the wild, wide-open world. It was us against nature. Man vs. beast.

Fear is also known as “fight or flight”. It’s that automatic response that stops us from doing physical harm to ourselves or helps us fight back when we’re being attacked.

Fear is in the ‘reptilian’ part of our brain. This is the oldest part of our brain and the part that was originally developed tens of thousands of years ago.

Additionally, when you are experiencing fear, or fight or flight mode, all your blood is redirected to the parts that are needed for fight or flight: your heart, lungs, muscles, and reptilian brain.

The rest of your brain is left with only enough blood to keep it on idle, which means that you have no cabability for rational or creative thought. It’s all

  • black or white,
  • yes or no,
  • fight or flight
  • good or evil.

In this state you don’t have the ability to think of alternative solutions to the situation. Only your two choices: run or fight.

The Problem: We don’t really need it as much as we used to.. When was the last time you needed to outrun a sabre-toothed tiger or herd of rumbling mammoths? It’s probably been a while!

But, back in the day, these were things our ancestors were faced with daily. So we needed that ‘fear’ or primitive brain to keep us alive.

Today though‚ you and I enjoy air-conditioned vehicles, stores with everything we’d ever need to survive and recreational activities to enjoy and add pleasure to life.

So, because the reptilian brain isn’t being worked over like it used to‚ it tries to find other ways to be useful, which ends up causing us to fear things we have no need to fear.

Think about it: Should you REALLY fear taking the last second shot in a tight basketball game!? Of course not! It’s not life or death. But that tricky little reptile part of our brain tries to kick in and then we justify that feeling of fear by telling ourselves that there must be something wrong with us, so I better not take the shot. Let’s take a quick look at the..

3 Big Mistakes Athletes Make That Cause Fear

  1. Focusing on negative repercussions.
    • This builds the fortress of fear and prevents the creative part of our mind from coming up with solutions. It also causes negative emotions to bubble up which paralyzes our ability to perform… NOT GOOD!
  2. Talking to people that don’t believe in your goals or are negative.
    • Sharing our hopes and dreams with people that aren’t supportive is a fantastic way to crush any positive momentum we’ve built up towards the achievement of our goals. So be very careful who you hang around with.
  3. Not doing things daily or weekly that continuously push your comfort zone.
    • A person that sits around dreaming and wishing for success without ever taking bold daily action to improving themselves, will be left in the dust by people with less talent but the will to improve.

Any of these three things will cause fear and doubt to build up in the mind of anyone… so avoid them at all cost! (Luckily I have a few tips for you, that you can do today to help build your confidence.)

The Secret Key…

The real key to overcoming self-doubt, fear and procrastination is something most people don’t think of: understanding ‘meaning’.

What do I mean by ‘meaning’? Meaning is the definition you give to an event, thing or person.

Example: If the LA Lakers win. What does that mean to you? Do you love it, hate it or are you completely indifferent and don’t really care?

Meaning is everything in the brain. The brain is constantly asking and answering questions. And most of those questions go something like this – “What does this mean to me?”

You walk out on the court for a game against your arch-rival in their gymnasium and you hear the boos and trash-talk rain down on you.

It’s at this moment your brain is asking, ‘what does this mean’, and depending on what definition you have for boos that are sent your way, it could either be a negative or positive experience.

Most of the athletes I coach at the professional level, love to hear those boos. They feed off of it. So for them , the meaning is positive.

But for others because they so desperately seek approval from other people, the boos can send them off of their game. Which hurts performance, because they lose focus and start worrying about things they can’t control. One of them being, ‘why don’t these people like me?’ ‘They don’t know me.’ ‘I’m a nice person.’ And on and on..

Change the meaning of what those ‘boos’ mean to you… and you can change the emotions that run through you. What if you you changed the meaning to, ‘if you’re booing now… wait until the game starts and than I’ll REALLY give you something to boo over.’ Or, ‘when I hear the boos it’s like injecting me with more and more confidence. I love it’ (Incidentally, that’s the exact mindset of one of my clients in the MLB, that plays for the Philadelphia Phillies.).

Anytime I’m confronted with something that is going to be putting me in a position of possibly making a mistake, failing or trying something new. I get excited.

And here’s why:

My entire life is centered around 3 things:

– Learning,
– Growing, and
– New Experiences.

And, because I know that the only way I can learn, grow and enjoy new experiences is by trying things that I could fail at, I start to get excited about them.

Let me give you an example.

A few years ago I was approached by the Indonesian Government about coming over to Jakarta to do a workshop on leadership and communication. I’d never been to Indonesia and I love to travel, so I jumped at the opportunity.

The Problem: The people that would be attending barely new any English. So I’d have to spend 2 weeks speaking incredibly slowly, so I didn’t go too fast for their comprehension. I was starting to doubt whether I’d be able to deliver the content I needed to, so they would get value out of the workshop.

Because I was going to speaking sooooo slowly, I wouldn’t be able to get through the amount of material I normally would. Plus I found out, the Indonesians like to take a lot of breaks during workshops. So now I would have even less time.

But I decided that this would be a great chance to strip out all the information that wasn’t going to be the highest impact and only deliver the best of the best.

The Result: The government was so thrilled with what I did, they awarded me the Rama Award for exceptional leadership and vision. I received an amazing sculpture from the country, which reminds me every day what can be achieved when you maintain a positive attitude.

3 Things You Can Do Today To Build Confidence

 

  1. Write down all of your successes. Grab a notebook, journal or sheets of paper (preferably a fresh new notebook or journal). Split your life up into 3 or 5 year intervals and write out everything you accomplished, achieved or learned how to do in those various 3 to 5 year segments of your life. And, DON’T over-simplify! Think about it: In your first 3 years of life you learned how to walk, eat, run, talk and on and on. All of those things take exceptional discipline. Continue to do this for all the years of your life and when you get done you should have a nice long list of things you’ve achieved, which should build your confidence and prove to you that when you set your mind to something you can do anything.

    The CEO of Levi’s, the huge jeans brand, has a journal on his desk with all of his achievements in it. And, when he’s faced with a daunting challenge or tough decision, he takes out his journal, sits back and reads it. After he’s done, he feels like he can do anything and moves on with his decision.

  2. Visualize Your Success. The mind will always move in the direction of it’s most dominant thought. So, if you’re always visualizing youself being successful at a particular skill or endeavour – the mind is forced to help create that reality for you. So every night before you go to bed, visualize yourself running down the court with 5 seconds remaining, dodging defenders, stopping at the 3-point line and draining a ‘nothin but net’ basket. Then bask in the amazing feeling that event would give you. The more you do this, the more your mind will get the idea that’s the way life is supposed to be. Then if you’re ever in that situation, it will feel completely natural for you to do it. All great players are phenomenal at visualization. So start now, and make it a habit.
  3.  

  4. Collect Cheerleaders.I don’t actually mean real Cheerleaders. I mean start to hang around with people that are supportive and want you to succeed. And, the great thing about the web is it’s easier than ever to find coaches, mentors and positive people to learn from.If you had 5 people you surrounded yourself with that were always telling you, ‘you could do it’, or keep working hard because I’m seeing some real improvements- do you think that would help to strip away some of the doubt or fear that creeps into your head? Absolutely!

    And, the great thing is‚ you’ve already found 2 with Alex and myself!

Just to recap:

  • We learned fear comes from a very old primitive part of our brain that we don’t really have much use for today.
  • If you change the meaning of how you interpret the events or things around you, you can change the feeling you have about it.
  • And, we learned there are things you can do today to help make positive changes in your game and life.

Be Bold. Take Action.

Todd Herman

Alex: What’d I tell you..

You know how a guy like Eminem is just a BEAST on the mic? Like he can make mistake after mistake, do drug after drug, take years off, then simply decide he’s back, grab the mic and just CRUSH IT — like he was just born to be one of the best ever at his craft?

That’s how I feel about Todd — when it comes to your mental game and your psychology as serious athlete, there is no one better. There is nothing he can’t help you with. Period.

Which Makes Me Even MORE Excited About This Announcement For You…

After Todd sent me this article, we got back on the phone, we caught up some more, talked about some sports psychology and even about my impending move to NYC (where he coincidentally lives) until we came up with an idea that YOU’RE going to LOVE. Here’s what’s up:

Todd has a 60-Day program called, “The Champion’s Challenge”. It’s basically a 60-Day Roadmap to:

  • Doubling (or even tripling) your self-confidence
  • Performing at your HIGHEST levels of performance EVERY time you play
  • Deleting fear, self-doubt and distraction from your mental programming FOREVER

I’ve been through it TWICE so far myself and it has done wonders for me.

And as for others, check this out: I recommended it to 3 different athletes last week. All 3 got it. And then, all 3 emailed me in the last couple days JUST to thank me for sending them Todd’s way and to tell me how DIFFERENT they already feel from the first week of “The Champion’s Challenge”. Imagine how that would feel if it was you..

Well now you can, because Todd just made his program available for you RIGHT here:

http://www.1shoppingcart.com/app/?af=1115286“>The Champion’s Challenge <--- Click Here! So now, you too can get access to the program that's finally going to show you how to ALWAYS believe in yourself and not have to pay the crazy prices all of Todd's clients pay! So I really hope you enjoyed today's article and..oh WAIT...I totally forgot to tell you that

When You Pick Up “The Champion’s Challenge” From Todd, I’m Going To Reveal To You My Number One Secret To ALWAYS Believing In Yourself!

Remember those 100+ people who commented in my last blog post “The Secret ALL Athletes Fear”? Well, they all wanted me to share my BEST secret to always believing in yourself and I was all set to today until I heard from Todd and all this happened, so here’s how I’m gonna make it up to you (get ready, it’s ice-cold COOL):

When you pick up a copy of Todd’s “The Champion’s Challenge” TODAY, I’m going to reveal to you the BEST trick I know to ALWAYS believing in yourself, but I’m not gonna just “tell” you about it…Nah, we do it BIG around these parts, so…

I Just Created An Online DVD Called “The Belief Black-Box” That Will “Jedi Mind-Warp” You Right Into The Confident/Cocky Border Zone!

In “The Belief Black-Box”, I’m going to show you my BEST trick for always believing in yourself so that:

  • You NEVER again let those cracks of doubt enter your head-zone
  • Your coaches and teammates start to look to YOU to get their leadership, passion and confidence from
  • You FINALLY play up to the level you know you should have been playing at all along

And GET this: It’s not just some “quick tip” or anything like that — it’s an EXERCISE I’m gonna have you go through that will LITERALLY have you feeling like you just traded places with the MOST confident person you know.

Think about that.. Imagine the most confident person you know.

Then imagine what’d it be like to be MORE confident than them..

That’s exactly what “The Belief Black-Box” has been created to do. It’s quick, it’s powerful and it’s enormously-effective.

And like I said, the darn thing is FREE when you pick up Todd’s 60-Day Program “The Champion’s Challenge” TODAY (it’s gotta be today though).

So, to recap:

1. You just read a GREAT article here at Game Speed Insider and you’re now well on your way to beating fear, once and for all. Double high-five.

2. To hook you up with access no one else on the entire friggin’ Internet gets, Todd is offering you his 60-Day, absolutely killer program “The Champions Challenge” to my subscribers only at a big-time Discount right NOW.

3. When you pick up “The Champions Challenge” TODAY, I’m going to GIVE YOU MY BEST TRICK for always believing in yourself inside a brand-new Online DVD I just finished putting together, called “The Belief Black-Box”.

It’s completely free and a complementary gift from me to you to go along with “The Champion’s Challenge”.

Beat fear and self-doubt forever with “The Champion’s Challenge” + The Belief Black-Box Online DVD right now:

http://www.1shoppingcart.com/app/?af=1115286“>The Champion’s Challenge <--- Click Here! If I were you, I’d jump on this faster than James Bond seducing an unsuspecting woman.

Have a great day, I’ll talk to you soon.

Your Coach in Speed and Quickness,

Alex

Todd’s Bio:

Todd Herman is a Peak Performance Coach to Professional and Olympic athletes. He’s also worked with Hollywood actors and business professionals on the inner game of success. But more importantly he loves Root Beer and probably needs counselling! You can find out more at: The Champion’s Challenge <--- Click Here!">http://thepeakathlete.com

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19 comments - add yours
Derrick

October 23, 2010

sounds good. great tips too. thanks alex.^^

metod

October 24, 2010

I’m so excited about that. Alex you are the best coach in the world!!!

Jan Bešter

October 24, 2010

Write down all of your successes: do you mean we write down all we achived in our life? like from first day to the last day? GREAT BLOG!

Theo

October 24, 2010

This is really interesting I never knew that fear comes from a tiny muscle in my head

José Adauto Garcia

October 24, 2010

Olá tudo bem? Alex eu gostaria muito de compra o seus DVDs , mas eu não sei falar a lingua, gostaria se possivel essa gravação fosse em portugues. Gostei muito do seu comentaria “O Desafio dos Campeões” e “A Crença de Caixa Preta”.
Por favor me ve o que o Sr. pode fazer por mim. Fique com Deus uma boa semana e um forte abraço.

ganesh

October 24, 2010

gonna buy this for sure how much is it?

andrew

October 24, 2010

I understand we all need money to survive,the thoughts & theories are good.Paying to fix every problem can be expensive,thanks.

Alex

October 24, 2010

@Jose – Não se preocupe o homem -, temos o Google ao nosso lado para a tradução.

Como para obter acesso a tudo isso, em Português, que é algo que eu teria que perguntar Todd (Todd, você pode badalar por aqui?).

Para o “The Black Box Crença”, eu poderia obtê-lo transcritas e colocadas em seu idioma para que você pudesse passar por isso. Se você quiser fazer isso, me e-mail separadamente em GameSpeedInsider@gmail.com com o assunto: Alex Português deve saber até agora e eu vou ligá-lo.

@Ganesh – Everyone else normally pays $97 for access to “The Champion’s Challenge” — my subscribers are getting at full $20 OFF starting Tuesday. And “The Belief Black Box” is F to the R to the E to the E (“free”).

And @Jan – Don’t write down every good thing you do every single day…if you’re anything like me, that’d take 12,000 pages of college-ruled scripture on the daily 🙂

Instead, write down all the big things you’ve accomplished and succeeded at. And Todd was saying don’t ignore the obvious one that are HUGE accomplishments…I have one for you right now: You’re on THIS site right now, learning about how to better yourself as an athlete.

How many other athletes can say that? <---Accomplishment. Holler, Alex

delroy

October 24, 2010

THANKS AGAIN ALEX FOR YOUR GREAT WORK.THIS IS SOME EXCELLENT TIPS FOR BOOSTING MY CONFIDENCE.THANK GOD FOR MAKING YOU.ALEX YOU KICK ASS.PEACE

James

October 24, 2010

Thanks for sharing tips with us

Thanks for all the great comments…

Jan, the answer is yes. Write down ALL of the successes you have…. the first time I did it. It took me 2 hours of brainstorming and than I returned to the list a few days later and added more to it.

Having a track record of your successes staring at you forever is one of the most valuable gifts you could ever give yourself… so do it! 🙂

I’ll keep an eye on the comments, and come back for any answers people need…

Be Bold. Take Action.

Todd

Brandon

October 27, 2010

I just want to say thank you so much to both Alex and Todd.
Alex, you pushed me to sign up for the challenge and I have to say that Todd has changed my life in one thirty minute video. A couple days ago I responded to the post about self doubt and I have to say that just learning how the mind works can really change a person’s outlook on everyday life. Both of you are amazing individuals and you’ve just changed my life. I can’t thank either of you enough other than saying everyone sign up for the challenge. The cost should not stop you because it will be worth every penny!

Thank you both so much!

Drorneede

August 20, 2011

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