Master Athlete Series - 4. The Power of Choice
HERE. WE. GO
Thank you to everyone reading this! We are in the second half of summer and I hope all of you are having an unbelievable week and that this week’s master athlete series helps you finish the week off right and takes you into next week with an unbelievable bang. With that said, today is all about the power of choice.
“No problem can be solved from the same level of thinking that created it”
- Albert Einstein
The thoughts we hold, the beliefs we create, and the challenges we face are all capable of being changed at any moment if we practice the power of conscious choice. Here’s a fun fact: over 90% of our daily choices are made unconsciously. Our morning rituals, commuting, work, and play are often chosen by our subconscious mind. However, these decisions are not created subconsciously. They all started, even those mindless habits, through making conscious choices to take those actions. Over time, they developed into subconscious behaviors. Some things we do because it makes us happy while other things we do because we do not want to face adversity. Each action we consciously make is registered in our mind and is associated with thoughts and emotions.
So why the heck is this so important to perform at a high level? It’s important because we often forget as performers how much power our decisions have and the effect they impart on our life. People who practice conscious choice don’t think about what has happened or what will happen, they are in the moment and make decisions based on their current capabilities and will more likely make smart and accurate choices.
Get into your head
Most people believe they need to get out of their head and clear everything out to perform well. That’s great if you’ve developed unbelievable subconscious behaviors your whole life that have been practiced over a long period of time. For the rest of the world, it’s time to start understanding and changing those subconscious actions. This can be known as “taking the wheel back” for some individuals, where you have your active mind take the wheel and drive like the rest of your life will change forever… because it will.
Think about where you are in life currently, and I mean everything in your life currently. Think about your job, your friends, your family, your workout schedule, your eating, your everything. It’s a lot, I know. However, the more you think about, the better! The more you bring these parts of life to the top of the priority list the easier it is to understand if it is something you love about your life or if it is something you bury down at the bottom of the thought list. If it is something you love about yourself and it is associated with great thoughts, fun memories, and positive thoughts, let it be and move on to the next piece of life. If it is something you’re not satisfied with, start thinking about how that part of your life came to be. Think about the actions you’ve taken that created that part of your life. Did it simply develop out of thin air or was it created by a series of conscious actions that, over time, became a subconscious behavior.
Change the music
Some people say you need to “face the music” of your choices. However, until you change the music being played, nothing will change in your situation. You must be willing to understand why parts of your life are there and know that every step you take moving forward is an opportunity to change them. Maybe you’ve been having some poor performance recently and you are looking for ways to improve by thinking about how you can mimic successful traits of high-performing people and adding them to your arsenal, only to find that you are just struggling in a new part of your life and fall deeper into the hole.
Choose to be unapologetically you
When you want to be better by copying others, you are making a fear-based decision to become something you are not. That person you are trying to copy has no formula for success outside their own unique and perfect strategy that fits THEM. Look inside yourself and think deeply about what makes you truly happy. What is the combination of internal and external factors that would make your life completely fulfilled? What is that one thing that you do that makes you different from every other person that someday they will want to understand so they can try and copy to boost their performance. Maybe it is a physical, mental, or spiritual gift that gives you purpose in everything that you do. Whatever that is, you feel effortless when you do it and if you could do it all day because it is truly you!
I was never the best athlete, the strongest, the fastest, the most skilled. However, I found so much joy and passion being in a position to inspire others and would find ways to create those opportunities. If I could inspire by being the strongest, I’d find a record to break. If I could inspire others through my voice, I’d research and give a speech that would give me goosebumps. Now my position to inspire performers is through the work I do and the tools I share to help people achieve their dreams and break through the walls that seemed immovable.
If you follow your inner purpose, you will understand that there are so many ways to decide on how to fulfill it. Give yourself the opportunity of a lifetime and consciously choose to have your life be created by your thoughts and actions that burn bright for others to be impacted by.
The answers are within us
I alluded to this earlier, quit looking for answers out in the world. The truth is that all the answers to everything you experience are within you. If you are trying to understand how you can refine your answer to the challenges you face, understand yourself the way others understand you. Talk to them, learn about them and learn about yourself. Chances are that you will have a moment where you realize you can solve any problem through deep understanding of your gifts and capabilities.
Think with purpose
Making great choices is no easy feat, which is why the concept of holographic thinking exists. Holographic thinking is the concept of using your entire self to make better decisions through logic, emotion, and intuition. Logic is all about analyzing a situation through examining facts by using your mind in a scientific way. Do research, find out what you already know, and most importantly be objective and see things as they are. Emotion is examination through your feelings. How does the decision affect you at your core and how does it affect others? The more you take your feelings into account, the better you will feel making any decision. Finally, intuition is all about that gut feeling that you simply cannot explain. Approach your choices with intuition and you might find out that a choice is perfect and you don’t know why, or possibly a choice that just doesn’t sit well. Use holographic thinking and you will make some of the best decisions of your life.
Give yourself the conscious edge
No two people make decisions the same way, but there are many ways to make decisions. Making a list of pros and cons, visualize each scenario playing out, see how a decision aligns with your core values and purpose, clearing your head and feeling it out, all are amazing choices. You must find out what works best for you and practice it. Over time, you will be making better decisions faster. The more conscious decisions you choose to make, the more you change your subconscious behavior and the life you live each day.
I’ve suggested this book before, but I have to do it again. Unfu*k yourself: Get Out of Your Head and into Your Life by Gary John Bishop is an amazing read that is hyper-focused on this week’s master athlete series. Gary is a coach, an incredible one at that, who writes about how you can uncover the thoughts, emotions, and actions that have created the life you’re winning at and how you can have your life match the champion you already are.
If you or anyone you know would benefit from today’s blog, let me know! I am here to be of service to people who want to create a life that is worth living. What was your biggest takeaway from the blog? You can always reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org to speak with me about your journey and gain clarity around how you can begin applying these amazing disciplines to your life.