There is “no question” about it. Did this cliche’ emerge in sports? I’m not sure, it’s just where I hear it most often.
What I’ll hear from competitors is how often they question themselves. “how did I do that?” “what are you doing?” “why am I out here today?” ” What are YOU DOING!?”
Mental toughness doesn’t ask questions. I don’t hear an athlete playing well, ask themselves “how are you playing so well?” “How are you so awesome?!”
Questions during competition emerge after mistakes and they make sense, but they are rhetorical, and they aren’t answered. All they do is lead to more questions or merely go unanswered.
If you want to become more mentally strong then do this instead!
Don’t question your own mental toughness!
Things will go bad, and we aren’t going to always play our best, so we will need to make adjustments. But, questions don’t lead to many positive adjustments, just more questions.
So, we need to give ourselves instructions about what to do NEXT.
Try statements instead.
We are either listening to ourselves or telling ourselves.
“Okay, next play,” “wow, that wasn’t the best,” “stay aggressive,” “find a way.”
These statements can even be motivational, but I’ve found that the best make slight instructional adjustments. We don’t need questions about ourselves or our play, we just need to develop a habit of telling ourselves what to do next.
Dr. Rob Bell is a Sport Psychology Coach. His company DRB & associates is based in Indianapolis. Some clients have included: University of Notre Dame, Marriott, and Walgreens. Check out the most recent books on Mental Toughness