Paralympian develops mindfulness and finds success

 In Confidence, Focus & Awareness, Professional & Olympic Athletes

I love my work. I love it because clients really can find the ‘success’ they are looking for and it isn’t that difficult; really. I realize the concept of mental training is still so new to so many people. I hear the doubts and questions every day when I talk to potential clients. Is this really going to help? How do you (Dr. Michelle) know it’s going to help? I understand. You can’t physically ‘see’ it or how it might help, so how do you know? It’s not at all tangible…until it is! The moment a client sees results, it becomes tangible! It is that moment when a client goes from feeling totally out of control, depressed, and confused to feeling in control and confident. It’s an amazing transformation! And every one’s journey is different.

Success in Rio

I’ve been working with a Paralympian who’s in Rio right now. When we first started working together Sara found success pretty instantaneously. That’s great but her work wasn’t done yet. Because of her busy schedule, our sessions got further and further apart. My concern was that because the instant success was not fully developed and reinforced that she might waver and she did. It takes practice, just like your physical skills. We talked about the importance of consistency in this work, charted a more consistent path, and I am happy (HAPPY!!!) to say that now she is experiencing the confidence and success she was looking for.

Mindfulness was key

While we worked on several really strategic things, I would say one of the most helpful was developing mindfulness. If we aren’t mindful of what’s going on, it’s double trouble – we can’t change it and when it creeps up on us we don’t realize it’s there and/or that it’s there to sabotage us. Some of our last conversations before Rio were amazing. I could hear how mindful Sara had become and was talking about making changes and shifts before I even brought them up. Not only was she so much more in control of what was happening but her confidence dramatically increased. She was strong. She was tough and she was ready to compete.

A small setback

Just before Sara was to takeoff for Rio, the ego was looking for ways to sabotage her and damage the work she had accomplished. Some ‘unexpected’ situations came up and she was struggling a bit. She was scared and nervous. She had been experiencing success but “will that continue?” The ego takes every opportunity to jump on negative talk and disrupt a good thing. But after a few conversations, Sara conquered it and didn’t let it get in the way. She took care of the unexpected, accepted the fear, and continued to use what was working – the new mental skills she learned. This is when you know that you have practiced it well and it is ingrained in your mind.

Results

The transformation is pretty complete. The skills and lessons Sara developed will carry over into everything she does. You know the mind and body are working together synergistically when she is consistent, successful, and confident in her performance.

Congratulations to #Confidence #Mindfulness #Success!

I love my job because I help people realize who they can be, particularly in the most challenging moments. Those are the moments that can make or break you, but with the right tools, you will have what it takes and you’ll own the outcome you want!

Good luck to all the Paralympic Athletes!

Photo cred: commons.wikimedia.org

Dr. Michelle Cleere
In her own private practice as an elite performance expert, Dr. Michelle Cleere helps top athletes, musicians, and executives in competitive fields unlock the power of the mind and create the mental toughness to be the best. Dr. Michelle’s extensive academic background, which includes a PhD in Clinical Psychology and a Masters in Sports Psychology, allows her to help clients deal with performance anxiety, gain more confidence, and build resilience. In addition to personal coaching, Dr. Michelle takes on many roles – a best-selling author, athlete, and teacher. Dr. Michelle’s bestseller line, Beating the Demons, helps clients develop practical skills to gain more control over competitive environments and mitigate the interruption in play to overcome intense odds and defeat adversity. As a 15-year USAT Coach, she developed simple and effective tools to mentally train her athletes, and they are used by coaches around the world. She is a professor at John F. Kennedy University where she teacher her students to use the mind as an ally to improve performance.
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