Let’s practice being in the present!
I am going to teach you about a Staring Game. You’ve probably played this game with a friend or sibling. This is the rule to the game: Choose an object (for example: a candle, a spot on a wall, a piece of equipment) and stare it for 30 seconds– don’t look away or think of anything else.
As you get better at this, try upping your time to 60 seconds.
Just stare at an object and think only about that object.
Doing this simple game will put your mind in the present moment…
You won’t be thinking about what you did earlier in the day or what might happen during practice or anything about your next meet. You won’t think about the skill combination that didn’t come together for your last competition, the way you shake on beam, or your fears of performing poorly in front of college recruiters.
You are practicing focusing on the present.
This sounds super simple right?
Here is the truth: there are so many different things vying for your attention at all times.
You may find it more difficult than you think.
Keep practicing and your ability to focus will increase and improve.
If you have a tendency to feel anxious, stressed or worried, simply play this “Staring Game”. By learning tools to be present and block out distractions, you will find that the focused moments, provide a relief from the other intense emotions that compete for your mental and emotional space.
When your mind is only thinking of staring at a spot on a wall or a beam or floor, nothing else, then you might find those neutral, blank thoughts allow you to breathe again.
When you can focus on something neutral, your mind stops considering the “what- ifs” and it learns to re-direct to present moments.
Those more neutral thoughts will slow the brain down, calm the heart, feel overall more manageable than thoughts that create anxiety and stress.
Try playing the “Staring Game” this week, and see how it feels for you.
Practice this tool anytime you feel your thoughts spinning and full of doubt or worry.
It’s a bit of a hi-jack tool to get your mind back in the present situation where the “what if’s” haven’t happened yet and the reality is just you, right here, practicing controlling your thoughts, which always leads to different feelings and different actions. This re-focusing tool alone, will give you different results.
Enjoy the “Staring Game” this week! If you want help with your mental core workouts, simply click here for a free coaching call. No obligation, just great tips to help you become the gymnast you dream about at night.
Sports Performance Coach
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