Can we all agree about Simone Biles? 


Back when I was a sport psychology professor, there was an activity I used to make sure NO ONE could be in the middle. 

It forced students to pick a side and then defend their reasoning. It was an excellent way to broach uncomfortable topics. 

The reason why not being in the middle was needed, is because everyone wanted to be on the fence. 

After watching, reading, devouring, and listening to all of the many comments, critiques, and backdrops about what took place with Simone Biles, I’ve come to a conclusion. 

Can we all agree about Simone Biles? 

I’m also not going to use a clever analogy to try and sway an opinion. 

And so you are aware- I am 100% in the middle! 

First, her legacy, impact, and influence is already solidified. Her impact with sexual abuse survivors, trauma victims, and for athletes and girls of color is unmatched. She is an incredible human being, a tough competitor and representative of the United States. No one can really debate any of this. 

I understand the mental health discourse. 

Also, her decision to step away from the team all-around after a failed vault may have been the right decision for her. I can’t really judge here. The “twisties” she experienced at the most crucial moment was probably indeed very catastrophic. 

Her decision to put her health above competing is also a decision I can’t accurately judge.

So, why am I in the middle?

Whereas I realize the mental health angle and the rush of public support of her, I remain conflicted. 

I have many colleagues in the sport psychology community and mental health world that champion her not competing. There are many claims that it was mentally tough NOT to compete. There were also many that felt her leadership was also to be lauded. 

The reason why I’m in the middle is because whereas I do not blame or criticize her, nor back anyone who said “she quit.” However, I also do not support or endorse the notion that this decision should be championed and celebrated as well. 

It is for me an “it is what it is” situation. 

I have a difficult time promoting her decision as an example to be followed.  It was again her decision to step away from her team at such a crucial juncture in team competition. I just don’t advocate it as the pathway that needs to be exemplified. 

It was the team that was severely impacted, not just her as an individual.

In the last dance documentary, the most difficult part to watch was the situation involving Scottie Pippen. Jordan was not with the team and a final play was called for Toni Kukoc to take the shot. Pippen was so distraught in that moment that he simply didn’t go out with his team for the final play. This was difficult because as a fan of his, I hated to see his actions that severely took away from the team. 

I spoke with several coaches about this situation and they all reported the same feedback. They understood her decision, but also struggled with it because of the team component. They questioned whether this was a precedent. I agree with them that it was a hinge moment. 

The crosswalk from this example into our own lives leaves questions. If a swimmer has severe anxiety, or a pitcher has a panic attack, or a volleyball player loses confidence, does this mean it’s okay to not compete for your team, and that it’s actually better if one does not? If test anxiety actually keeps one from taking the test, how is this progress? 

The world is fraught with difficulties, setbacks, and challenges. The obstacles won’t be removed if we shy away from the exact challenge facing us. 

It is through the help of mental coaches and sport psychologists and clinical psychologists that one learns the skills needed to overcome such performance blocks and clinical mental health issues that we all face. 

Can we agree about Simone Biles decision that it reveals the imperative that athletes, coaches, and parents seek the help of trained professionals before such moments hit. When we know that we are struggling, it is our responsibility to reach out, connect, and have a support network already built up.

Because when your moment hits, it’s too late to prepare, we need to be ready. 

The hierarchy of mental skills that can best be utilized under extreme pressure do not magically occur. They are practiced skills. As it’s seen, even the best in the world, who have been in the exact situation previously, can still face such blocks. 

This is simply why I’m in the middle of the situation and hope we all agree about Simone Biles. 

I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the amazing performances and bravery of Suni Lee, Mykala Skinner, Jade Kerry, Grace McCallum, & Jordan Chiles. They were amazing! These competitors were given an opportunity and all stepped up both as a team and individually.

One more legit question- will their names continue to ring true months and years later, or will it simply be remembered for Simone Biles? 

agree about Simone Biles

 


dr rob bell speakerDr. Rob Bell is a Sport Psychology Coach. His company DRB & associates coach executives and professional athletes and is based in Indianapolis. Some clients have included three winners on the PGA Tour, Indy Eleven, University of Notre Dame, Marriott, and Walgreens. 

Please Check out all the books and the mental toughness podcast - 15 Minutes of Mental Toughness as we interview expert athletes and coaches about Mental Strength and their Hinge Moment. New blog posts are published weekly. 

 

mental health

If You Want To Champion Your Mental Health, Then You Will Puke.


The year of 2020 was one big puke fest. Or if you prefer a colloquialism from the movie “Stand By Me”, a barf-o-rama. 

It even continued into 2021, and the effects were evident.  Mental illness in adults has increased and in fact every age-group has worsened. Youth issues have skyrocketed.

Anecdotally speaking, people are more fearful, tense, angry, and short-tempered. 

So, what can be done to reverse this negative mental health trend? 

First, we must puke! 


I’ve known several professional and collegiate athletes who would heave before playing, and it was actually a good thing for them.

During the first inning versus the Texas Rangers, Adrian Houser was pitching for the Milwaukee Brewers.  He unfortunately booted a ball hit directly back to him. Shortly after the error, he doubled over and hurled directly onto the infield. His violent puke caused the athletic trainers to come running and the infielders to surround him. But, once that affair was finished, he rallied!

He pitched six innings, allowed only one run, and struck out 10 batters en route to the win.



Puke & Rally: It’s not about the setback, it’s about the comeback

Most self-help books tout five ways to success or three simple steps to fulfillment. It’s frankly all crap.

Life is hard!

Success is not guaranteed and you are not owed anything. 

If you want to champion your own mental health, then you will puke.

Vomiting is a rite of passage. Vomiting is not fun, but it’s necessary.

It’s our body’s natural response to get rid of nasty toxins. Some of these toxins reside in our own mental make-up. 

Pandemics, business failures, financial hardships, loss of confidence, depression, social anxiety, medical problems, disease, housing issues, failing, litigation, addiction, writer’s block, losses, getting passed over, fired, fear, changing careers, other’s criticism of us, moving cities, embarrassment, stress, death of a loved one, injuries, family troubles, and bad performances are just a small sample of how we all puke.


Fear of these events occurring and experiencing hardships, difficulties, frustrations, break-ups, and breakdowns are sadly what prevent some people from attempting the difficult paths of life. It keeps us devoid of a purpose.

The purpose of life is to have a purpose. 

Because of the difficulty of the journey and the challenges and struggle that await us, many people try to avoid puking. They simply do not sign up for the race or contest, let that business idea fade away, nor enter life. They stand on the sidelines. They play it safe. 

There appears to be no risk, no failure, and no puking involved when on the sidelines.

But nothing can prevent puking. We have all puked. There is no reward for playing it safe in life.

The sideline life simply causes a different kind of suffering, and it’s a slow decay. It becomes just a different kind of struggle and one where mental health issues arise. There are major downsides with no reward, little meaning, excitement, or impact. People become isolated, lack connection in relationships, and become absent of an overall purpose. Negativity, complacency, and depression are some of the evils that infect these people. And let’s admit, it happens to us all from time to time. The key is do we have a purpose?

The purpose of life is to have a purpose.



Life is not a spectator sport! It requires courage.

If you’ve played this video game called life, there will be many levels and reset buttons along the way. No gamer conquers all the levels at once. They take many hours with many setbacks, figuring out what works and what doesn’t in order to advance.

Courage can’t be found underneath your couch. It is not something that is achieved watching TV or on your phone. It has to be encountered in the world.

Courage is an experience. But it is not a one-time event. Courage only results from a series of setbacks and failures.

We will make repeated mistakes, over and over again. We will fail. Only when we continue to move forward, refusing to give up, do we begin to exercise courage and rally.

While we all will puke in some area of life, we will not all rally.

Rallying becomes a choice; it takes mental toughness.

We all have puked, the key is will you rally?

mental health


 


dr rob bell speakerDr. Rob Bell is a Sport Psychology Coach. His company DRB & associates coach executives and professional athletes and is based in Indianapolis. Some clients have included three winners on the PGA Tour, Indy Eleven, University of Notre Dame, Marriott, and Walgreens. 

Please Check out all the books and the mental toughness podcast - 15 Minutes of Mental Toughness as we interview expert athletes and coaches about Mental Strength and their Hinge Moment. New blog posts are published weekly. 

How To get In The Zone In Athletics


How To Get In The Zone In Athletics


The ZONE, Flow, Peak Performance….

Ahhhh. It’s a magical, zen like place where everything goes right, we can’t miss, time stands still, and most importantly, in that moment- we are IN THE MOMENT.

I’ve been in a zone twice in my entire life that I can accurately remember.  T   W   I   C   E ! ! !

1) The first was while living in Philadelphia getting my Masters degree and needing to get a run in late at night. It was 9:30 PM and I ran like Forrest Gump. It felt like there was no ground underneath me, I was moving that fast. It was just 5 miles, but it actually brought me to tears about how good it felt. 

2) A second instance was when I first shot 2 under par for 9-holes. I simply could do no wrong. It was bliss. Although these two instances shed no light to me on how to get in the zone in athletics. More research was needed. 


Then, I was in that place again recently. Only 15 years later….

It was an easy 6-mile training run, but my legs were sore and tired. However, immediately when I began on the trail, it started to pour down rain. I LOVE running in the rain (until my shoes get too heavy). 

This rain fell just like in the movie The Notebook, although, there was no Rachel McAdams present. 

I’m not sure what took place except, this rain cleansed my soul and I was energized, refreshed, and in the moment….

It was wonderful! I was in a zone… for a moment.

My mind often gets in it’s own way because I started thinking “wow, I feel so awesome” I can’t wait to write about this. And that action of thinking about thinking slowly brought me out of that trance like state and while my run was still great, I was no longer immersed and in flow.


How To Get In The Zone in Athletics 


A difficulty is that it is such a transient space, a fleeting moment. It is nirvana, paradise, a utopia in our own mind. It is such much more than just performing well or enjoying it. It transcends

Hopefully, we’ve all been there. Maybe it was a passive experience, like at a concert, a movie, or anytime when we lost track of anything else. 

But, the greatest part is when we are the one’s doing an activity. 

Any creative endeavor can lead itself to being in a zone, Musicians, artists, actors, writers and athletes are all creatives that can get to this place because they are immersed into their own world. These activities BEG us to be here and present. 

However, the recipe for how to get in the zone in athletics is simple

You have to have high skill and a high challenge. If any of these are off, then it won’t happen. You’ll either get anxious or bored.  But, the mental part of a zone experience is that we need to stay in the moment. 


8 Simple Ways To Stay In The Moment 


One huge hinderance…

Sadly, since I’ve been in that place 2 1/2 times, I can certainly share what prevents us from how to get into a zone in athletics. 

Each of our chosen activities and challenge brings forth a host of distractions. There is no greater obstacle in which we all succumb to the dreadful EXPECTATIONS. 

Today’s expectations turn into tomorrow’s resentments. 

Unfortunately, we already have a preconceived idea about how our performance is supposed to go and that alone is enough to keep us from the moment. 

  • An expectation about a time we are supposed to achieve.

  • An expectation about our score. 

  • A comparison with other people performing. 

  • Thinking about what others think about us. 

  • A mistake or mess-up.

  • Any thoughts about results or outcome.

  • High stress level or being anxious about the unknown heading into a performance.

A costly drawback is simply any expectation that we have about ourselves or situation. It causes us to get stuck inside of our own head and not fully immersed into our activity. 

A harder attempt on how to get in the zone in athletics will often result in a futile search for the holy grail.

It will leave you frustrated, confused, and dumbfounded.

A simpler approach is staying in an actual moment and practicing it. We play like we train! Although it’s a magical place to be, a far tougher challenge is being able to gut, grind and find a way to comeback when we do not have it that day. 

That’s true mental toughness

Or just wait for it to rain and allow it to wash away any expectations. 

 


dr rob bell speakerDr. Rob Bell is a Sport Psychology Coach. His company DRB & associates coach executives and professional athletes and is based in Indianapolis. Some clients have included three winners on the PGA Tour, Indy Eleven, University of Notre Dame, Marriott, and Walgreens. 

Please Check out all the books and the mental toughness podcast - 15 Minutes of Mental Toughness as we interview expert athletes and coaches about Mental Strength and their Hinge Moment. New blog posts are published weekly. 

How To get In The Zone In Athletics

 

 

 


The Three Types Of An Active Listener


If I’m uncomfortable or interviewing someone, I’ll employ this motto- Listen and learn rather than talk and tell.

One of my podcast guests, Dave Meltzer eloquently calls it to be more interestED than interestING

Curiosity is a super power.

He predicts curiosity and creativity will be the great separator amongst people because of the information that we already have at our fingertips. Creativity and curiosity…

Dave Meltzer was worth 100 million dollars and was living it up. He had access to everything and was living in excess. 

But, he had a hinge moment.

He lost it all.

And like many of us, his worst moment ended up becoming his best! He chalked it up to a major dummy tax where he was with the wrong people, making the wrong decisions, and being in the wrong situations.

People, places, and things…

His interview on my podcast- 15 minutes of mental toughness was full of knowledge, wisdom, and epic sound bites. But, one of the best parts was his take on the three types of an active listener in society.


1. The Interrupter

This is the person who can’t help themselves. They are actively listening to when to interrupt! 

They just interrupt you from the story to either one up you, or interrupt the anecdote and interject what they did or what you should do. I listen to some podcast hosts who love to hear themselves speak so much that they continually interrupt to interject. It’s annoying…

These also seem to be the classic, “you know what you need to do” people. They are the one’s who always know what’s best for you…

When we are the interrupter, it’s impossible to be an active listener. As a remedy, we simply need to allow the speaker space to navigate and finish.


2. The Waiter-

Waiters in restaurants take your order, and frankly I love the one’s who memorize their tables. They also never sell their guests food either when delivering. They know where it’s going and don’t yell out     “Okay, who had the clams casino?” 

However, the waiter in real life are much more dangerous and strategic than the interrupter. They are also more polite.

But, these are the one’s who are simply waiting to speak and “tell you what’s best for you.” 


3. The Learner-

These are the individuals who practice listen and learn rather talk and tell.

These people are seeking the light, love and lessons out of everything and everyone. What keeps us from this state of being is our ego. When I struggle with listening, I’m wanting so bad to get it and share my experience.

My ego wants to shine.

Being able to put it aside and focus on being an active listener is the challenge. 

active listener


 


dr rob bell speakerDr. Rob Bell is a Sport Psychology Coach. His company DRB & associates coach executives and professional athletes and is based in Indianapolis. Some clients have included three winners on the PGA Tour, Indy Eleven, University of Notre Dame, Marriott, and Walgreens. 

Please Check out all the books and the mental toughness podcast - 15 Minutes of Mental Toughness as we interview expert athletes and coaches about Mental Strength and their Hinge Moment. New blog posts are published weekly. 

at big picture


Get At Big Picture Goals By Simply Doing This One Thing


During a marathon, there are ups & downs. I do not think life is like a marathon however, I believe it’s much more arduous and resembles a 100-mile trail run. 

Completing marathons used to be my goal, but now, they are just training runs. The limits we set on how great we can be, how much money we can make, or how many people we can impact are truly inside of the limits we place upon ourselves. Once we reach a summit in our lives, there becomes another to reach. 

The marathon of 26.2 miles is indeed still a great accomplishment. I had a coach call me up recently because their colleague had signed up for the 26.2 mile race, yet the furthest she ran up to that point was 10 miles. And the race was in three days!!

They called the correct person!! Because even though, I don’t recommend it, I have finished a 1/2 ironman with no bike and less than 10 days of training. 

My advice after listening to her passion and “why” behind this endeavor was simple…. It’s the ONE THING we need to do when striving for audacious achievements.

Keep the picture small. We get at big picture goals by keeping it small. 

Too often, it’s the big picture thinking and goals, and aspirations that actually get in our way… The picture becomes way too big.

We start to think about where we currently are and where we want to be, and that the gap almost instantaneously seems much larger and longer. When we come to terms with how far we must go, then a defeatist mindset can easily creep in. 

It is a difficult mindset to get away from because of the years of echoes etched inside our mind. “Keep the big picture in mind”  blah, blah, blah. 

It’s natural to focus on the result, the product, and the outcome. The issue with that thinking is it takes us immediately away from the process and the task at hand! 

Getting at big picture goals is only achieved by keeping the picture small. 

My advice to this marathon warrior was this: JUST THIS MILE.

Focus only on this mile, and when your mind drifts to how much further you have to go, hit the rest button and refocus.  I also have to remember this on the daily and especially during my own races

The reality is that mile 14 or 15 may indeed be awful and suck. There’s no denying that. 

But, just because mile 14 or 15 is poor, DOES NOT mean that mile 18 or 20 will be the same way! The flip side of the reality coin is we all have a second wind in life! And we will hit it, IF we stay focused on the short-term, the task at hand, this shot, this step, this breath, and just this moment. 

Besides…

Yesterday ended last night…

Merely because Monday was awful, or February was poor, or we lost last week, or got beat, literally has no bearing on this moment, this event, or situation.  That’s the truth! Setbacks can have an influence on our belief patterns and mindset moving forward, but it still has no vote toward any future successes (unless we let it). 

What is so troubling about setbacks is that we allow it to get at big picture goals, by taking that difficult period and making it larger than what it really is…. 

Our beliefs can become “If February was this bad, then how can this month possibly be better” or “If I can’t win here, how can I possibly win next week” or “If I’m not successful at this level, then how can I reach my goals.” and so on and so on. 

After we have our vision , it doesn’t do us much good to keep looking at them.

Goals are like the sun, we can’t stare at them. 

Staying in the moment allows us to rally and perform our best when it matters the most. KEEP THE PICTURE SMALL!

at big picture


 


dr rob bell speakerDr. Rob Bell is a Sport Psychology Coach. His company DRB & associates coach executives and professional athletes and is based in Indianapolis. Some clients have included three winners on the PGA Tour, Indy Eleven, University of Notre Dame, Marriott, and Walgreens. 

Please Check out all the books and the mental toughness podcast - 15 Minutes of Mental Toughness as we interview expert athletes and coaches about Mental Strength and their Hinge Moment. New blog posts are published weekly. 

 

best happiness status

 


4 Ways To Increase Your Best Happiness Status


Regression to the mean is a simple concept.

If a variable exists that is outside of the mean, it is an outlier, and then the subsequent point or variable will be eventually be closer to the mean. 

There is a baseline level in every area of our lives. If we shoot a really good score of golf, chances favor that the next round will be closer to our average (mean) or base game.  If we are mentally tough and have an off day, or week, or month, then we will also return back to the mean. 

Our best happiness status is the same, we all return the mean.

In my podcast episode with Barry Zito. Here was a MLB pitcher, who won a CY Young and signed a $126 million dollar contract, but was miserable.  He lived in the Hollywood Hills mansion, had the massive 450 gallon fish-tank, $150,000 sound system, and the new Bentley. But, he was miserable, so I asked him to elaborate. 

He said “It’s like when you get a new pair of shoes.” You are all excited and geeked out and can’t wait to run in them.  (I got that reference!)

He said, “that feeling, wears off.” 

 It doesn’t matter how great the achievement, how big the bankroll, or size of the trophy.

We all return to our baseline. Our best happiness status is simply that, a snapshot, a level, a state.  

For instance, after the event, we’ll return to the mean, whatever our level of happiness was before the thing or achievement or payday. 

Since we return to our own mean, we’ll simply need to raise our overall baseline level of happiness.  Once we can get to the state of  “I AM”  happy, or we will continue to chase it. 

And we can’t “get to happiness” with things, stuff, accomplishments, or status. 


1) Relationships

  • We can only increase our overall baseline through the quality of our relationships and the impact we make on other people’s lives. The stronger our relationships, the higher or overall baseline level of happiness. 

Relationships either get deeper or they die. 


2) Gratitude

  • Gratitude is memory of the heart.

Yet, we take almost everything for granted. The water we drink, the bed we lay in, the ability to walk or even run.  An attitude of gratitude is a myth. 

Gratitude is a muscle and unless we take certain actions of gratitude, this muscle can atrophy. Gratitude exponentially increases our best happiness status. If our base level of happiness is one from scarcity (not enough), then it’s almost impossible to raise our level. We have to develop and nurture our abundance mentality. 


3) Process over product

  • Brett Favre won the Super Bowl Trophy in 1996. A very emotional player, it’s the ultimate in any footballer’s journey. So, here he reached the top of the mountain! And yet, he thought “Is that it?” He felt this, because he didn’t want for it to be over! 

Those who prep and prepare and actually climb Mount Everest take many months to do so. And yet, they are only at the top of Mount Everest for a few minutes. 

When we finished our basement. It was wonderful. But, as we enjoyed it and looked back, an interesting thing popped up. We actually enjoyed picking the colors, painting the walls, having our kids paint, choosing the carpet, and furnishing it and decorating it.

It was the process of it all that was so exciting! But, we often don’t appreciate the process until the product was over. 

PUKE & RALLY is all about that the process is more important than the product! 


4) Suffer

  • We are physically comfortable in life.  Nothing wrong with comfort, but because we are physically comfortable, it does not mean we are mentally comfortable. The human spirit is more pleased with growth rather than comfort. And unless we have adversity in our lives, then we can’t grow. 

If things are easy, and there is no challenge, then there can’t be much joy in “it.” The harder we work for something, the more we enjoy it! 

The people who were given the real gift in life are those who have suffered and made it through. How are you creating these moments of suffering? 

1.  Relationships

2. Gratitude

3. Process over Product

4. Suffer 

 


dr rob bell speakerDr. Rob Bell is a Sport Psychology Coach. His company DRB & associates coach executives and professional athletes and is based in Indianapolis. Some clients have included three winners on the PGA Tour, Indy Eleven, University of Notre Dame, Marriott, and Walgreens. 

Please Check out all the books and the mental toughness podcast - 15 Minutes of Mental Toughness as we interview expert athletes and coaches about Mental Strength and their Hinge Moment. New blog posts are published weekly. 

best happiness status

stop unhealthy comparisons


3 Ways To Stop Unhealthy Comparisons


Most of what I read is about how to stop comparing yourself to others.

The “comparison is the thief of joy” stuff.  It makes perfect sense. Even in my first book, Mental Toughness Training for Golf:, I extensively wrote that one common way to lose confidence is to compare yourself to others.

 I was wrong.


It’s our natural tendency to compare ourselves, in fact, since the age of about six years old, we started doing it all the time.  

We are in a constant state of evaluating to those around us in all areas of life. 

This type of beauty contest comparison is what causes internal strife because we often end up in a state of “I’m not good enough.” The media and advertising world pray on all of us by comparison. It’s unavoidable. 

No matter how good we get, there is always someone better. Even if we are the best, it’s not for very long. It’s the mountaintop fallacy. 

I previously subscribed to the belief that we should ONLY focus on getting better and comparing ourselves to our own level of improvement. I still believe this, but, there are healthy comparisons that we are we missing! I mean if we are the average wealth of our five closest friends, isn’t that dependent upon comparison?

Mental Toughness is NOT ALL OR NOTHING THINKING. 

We need to recognize and stop unhealthy comparisons and simply find more productive ways to do it. 


Unhealthy Comparison #1- We focus on the differences

“We judge others using their highlight reel, while we judge ourselves by what happens backstage.”

We regularly find the differences between others, our competitors, about why they are better than us. Or, we find differences about why we are superior.

Both of these are why we need to stop unhealthy comparisons because they put us in a position of inferiority or superiority. We are relying on our comparison to feel confident about ourselves.

The healthy alternative is noticing and focusing on the similarities between others puts us in a state of equality and forces us to pay attention to what we can control. Besides this comparison becomes an excellent way to build our confidence! 


 Unhealthy Comparison #2- We become envious

“We need to focus on our ‘why’ and others ‘how’.”

We find someone who is better than us or has something we desire and we get envious.

We think how awesome it would be for us to have that talent, status, or car. 

We may even ponder “why” they deserve it. We need to stop unhealthy comparisons because it puts us in a state of negativity and reinforces the belief that we are not good enough

Instead, the healthy way is to replace the envy, and use that individual again as a model.

Focus on “how and “what” they did to achieve that goal and how we can do the same.


Unhealthy Comparison #3- We notice only people better than us

The way that we improve is to use these models of people who are better than us, find out their how, and use it ourselves. But, we need to focus on people worse off as well. 

In the interviews for my 2nd book, The Hinge: The Importance of Mental Toughness, I came across people who had lost a child.  It is the most difficult thing any parent or person can probably experience.

I interviewed different parents who lost a child at birth, 2 months, 2 years old, and 20 years old. Each of these circumstances were different and painful, but it put into perspective that no matter how bad we have it, someone has it worse. My interviews with these strong people revealed that the manner in which a child was lost had a major impact on the grieving process. 

The pandemic put a lot into perspective for us. If we adjust our lens the correct way, then we can see the benefits and the good. When we focus on the things we are grateful for, it develops an action of gratitude.

Once we begin to count our blessings, it gets tough to stop.

 


dr rob bell speakerDr. Rob Bell is a Sport Psychology Coach. His company DRB & associates coach executives and professional athletes and is based in Indianapolis. Some clients have included three winners on the PGA Tour, Indy Eleven, University of Notre Dame, Marriott, and Walgreens. 

Please Check out all the books and the mental toughness podcast - 15 Minutes of Mental Toughness as we interview expert athletes and coaches about Mental Strength and their Hinge Moment. New blog posts are published weekly. 

Mental Health Experts Tips About Handling The Pandemic

Mental Health Experts Tips About Handling The Pandemic


 Mental Health Experts Tips About Handling The Pandemic 


I love being able to feature experts because they are much smarter than me. I sent out a request and received a lot of responses, and after sifting through many pieces, “hear ye, hear ye, these are thee best.”

It is a very difficult time! many people are struggling. Resources and blog posts are needed to actively incorporate mental skills into daily life. We need to be proactive, not reactive about our health.  

I have my own thoughts and strategies regarding a quarantine and overall health, but I still lean on these greats.

I trust that you’ll be able to get some beneficial actionable knowledge. 

Mental Health Experts Tips About Handling The Pandemic 


Coping With Abrupt EndingsDr. Tim Herzog 

Becoming A Butterfly During An Epidemic Jenna Fuchs, MS

One Mental Practice You Should Be Doing Right NowCoach Blaise, EdD

Well, It’s Groundhog Day All Over Again- Coach Levi Nelson  #Lead 

Creating A Lemonade Edge During A PandemicDr. Kate Hays

A Letter to Coaches In The Wake Of A Epidemic- Brian Alexander, M.A.

Staying Productive During A Pandemic Taylor Staden- B.A.  


Feel free to share your thoughts about the article- Mental Health Experts Tips About Handling The Pandemic. 


 


dr rob bell speakerDr. Rob Bell is a Sport Psychology Coach. His company DRB & associates coach executives and professional athletes and is based in Indianapolis. Some clients have included three winners on the PGA Tour, Indy Eleven, University of Notre Dame, Marriott, and Walgreens. 

Please Check out all the books and the mental toughness podcast - 15 Minutes of Mental Toughness as we interview expert athletes and coaches about Mental Strength and their Hinge Moment. New blog posts are published weekly. 

how positive must I be

 how Positive must I be


How Positive Must I Be To Change My Mood?


Walking out of a coffee shop, my hands were full. 

The door opened up from someone walking in (with perfect timing I might add). They walked in first, but strangely, they didn’t hold the door open and I had to do the stop the door trick with my foot. I managed it okay, but man, I was pissed.

I thought to myself, damn, I don’t live in Philly anymore. 

This simple encounter bothered me. I let it infect me with negativity; my own reaction to this incident soured my mood and negatively affected my other interactions with others.

That’s the power of a negative interaction! 

So, how positive must I be to change my mood? 


Dr. John Gottman’s research at the University of Washington examined successful and unsuccessful marriages.

His initial study examined 95 newlywed couples across several years as he sought to find out predictors of divorce. Eventually, he completed over twelve longitudinal studies and 3,000 couples, even following one couple for over 20 years. He eventually predicted with over 90% accuracy marriages that would end in divorce. 10

He discovered an interesting thing about the communication between happy and unhappy couples.

Successful couples had a 5:1 positive to negative ratio during conflict.

In the most sacred relationships, the ones cherished and invested in the most, five positive experiences were needed to every one negative one.

That’s how positive must I be to change my own mood? 

Unsuccessful couples had a 0.8:1 positive to negative ratio of interactions. It was almost a ratio of 1:1. 

Why must it be 5:1?

Negative experiences simply carry greater weight than positive experiences. It’s why we remember the bad more than the good. A put-down of a spouse in front of others is much more hurtful than the warm feeling of a “nice shirt honey” compliment.  

The bad outweighs the good and it takes much more effort to correct a hurt. That’s also reason why it is easier to criticize than it is to compliment.

Anger is labor intensive. 

How positive must I be to change my own mood? If we are not positive with others in a 5:1 ratio, then a strange boomerang effect takes place.

We then become negative with ourselves.

Anger directed inward = depression. 

We give away what we possess in our mood, and if we give away our own negativity, then the negative spiral of negativity take place.

The simplest way to become positive with ourselves is to be positive to others. That’s the secret to mental toughness. 

If we are able to adopt the 5:1 principle with others, then we cannot but help ourselves as well.

No one can help someone else without also helping themselves.

How positive must I be depends on how bad you want to get out of the negative trap you’re in.

Positivity must be deliberate, and by design, because it does not happen by default.  Make it a goal to provide five positive comments, feedback, or interactions to overcome the negativity that occurred. 


 


dr rob bell speakerDr. Rob Bell is a Sport Psychology Coach. His company DRB & associates coach executives and professional athletes and is based in Indianapolis. Some clients have included three winners on the PGA Tour, Indy Eleven, University of Notre Dame, Marriott, and Walgreens. 

Please Check out all the books and the mental toughness podcast - 15 Minutes of Mental Toughness as we interview expert athletes and coaches about Mental Strength and their Hinge Moment. New blog posts are published weekly. 

2020 Halloween is more important than ever before

 2020 Halloween Is More Important Than Ever Before


Why 2020 Halloween Is More Important Than Ever Before


I wasn’t always a massive Halloween honk. I still don’t have a yard full of gravesites or skeletons. 

And I was certainly never a hater. I recall my wife and I once checking out a church (sans kids) and one of the fellow members shared that Halloween was an evil Holiday. Um, bye!

It’s only been the last few years that I’ve converted to the importance of Halloween as arguably the best holiday! 

Stay with me… 

  • 4th of July is all about freedom, cookouts, and partying. 
  • Thanksgiving is about family. 
  • Valentines Day is for couples. 
  • Memorial Day and Labor Day are significant for the calendar and welcoming of seasons. 
  • Christmas is well, Christmas. 
  • And I don’t need to share with you the importance of Arbor Day! 

Our 2020 Halloween is more important than ever before because it’s the only holiday that celebrates community! 

When we can see past the costume, we will witness the magic that Halloween is way more important than just candy. 

Halloween is not about your country, state, or even town. October 31st is about your little carved out pumpkin of a community! 

Don’t we all remember “that” house that gave out full-sized snickers or cans of soda? No one outside of your own community is privy to that secret. 

When do we ever walk up to your neighbors house and say hello? And expect a gift. 

It’s a day of welcoming your entire community to come up to your front door and give them something for just being part of it. It’s an evening of walking with neighbors, sharing with neighbors, and seeing those who we might not have otherwise. 

Shouting “Trick or Treat” is really just a way of saying “I love you!”

This is NOT the year for a virtual trick or treating, whatever that means.

Virtual means isolation.

This blog and mission is all about Mental Toughness, and confidence happens within us when we are connected to others. 

Yes, a safe 2020 Halloween is more important than ever before. And of course, wear a mask (pun), hand out sanitizer (instead of toothbrushes if you’re “that” house), keep the candy in a dish outside if you wish.

But, tis’ the season to make sure you celebrate it with your community. Besides, If “we are all in this together” then let’s show solidarity with our kids at least for one special evening. This isn’t a mission statement or proclamation, it’s a request for all to connect. 

Now, the CDC and other health agencies have recommending canceling Halloween. They’d rather not have this debate because it’s a real example of the How The Grinch Stole Christmas!  

Lastly, if more proof is needed that 2020 Halloween is more important than ever before, then for the first time since 1965, network television canceled airing The Great PumpkinSeriously, 2020 is the year that they cancel it? Errrrr, you can now buy it on Apple +. 


 


dr rob bell speakerDr. Rob Bell is a Sport Psychology Coach. His company DRB & associates coach executives and professional athletes and is based in Indianapolis. Some clients have included three winners on the PGA Tour, Indy Eleven, University of Notre Dame, Marriott, and Walgreens. 

Please Check out all the books and the mental toughness podcast - 15 Minutes of Mental Toughness as we interview expert athletes and coaches about Mental Strength and their Hinge Moment. New blog posts are published weekly.