April 14

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The Four Cs of Growing a Healthy and Positive Mindset

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Learn the 4 Cs of growing a positive and healthy mindset. Grow your ability to Cope. Gain Confidence. Develop Commitment and learn to embrace Challenges. That's right, it's possible to do all of these. You just have to stay in control of your thoughts.

Allow the summary below to act as a guide to help grow your own mindset.

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How to grow our ability to cope with stress

Whenever you have to perform, whether at a sporting event, teaching a class or give a presentation, have some sort of ritual.

Develop a routine that helps ground you and keeps your focus on the task at hand.

Some people like to think of this as "getting into character".

In your mind, put on your superhero outfit and get ready to crush it.

In other words, walk tall with your shoulders back.

You can formalise a routine with deep breathing, perhaps a physical warm up and a specific drill or rehearsal. Alternatively, perhaps you find a quiet spot and focus solely on your thoughts.

Practise mediation, positive self-talk and include lots of mental imagery. Notice your thoughts and your feelings.

Some athletes like to plan for difficulties arising during their matches. For example, what they will do when a certain scenario arises. You can pre-empt these events and rehearse the outcomes. As a result, you'll feel more ready to deal with whatever comes your way. You know in advance how you are to react.

In short, less surprises, more actions.

How to grow our mindset to build confidence

Building confidence takes time, but it's a journey worth travelling.

You have to commit to changing the way you think and feel.

When your mind starts to doubt yourself, catch it and turn it around. Instead, shift your focus to something that will strengthen your self-belief. For instance, think of something you can do well. Or a time when you were on cloud 9.

Capture the feelings, emotions and thoughts you experience as you think of positive memories.

Additionally, look at those you socialise and hang around with. Make sure your circle includes people who boost your self-esteem and sense of worth.

Distance yourself from the Negative Nancys and Complaining Kevins.

Grow our mindset to develop a stronger sense of commitment

In the same way you set targets and plan your fitness goals, set a goal of how you want to develop your sense of commitment.

Ahead of time, think of the moments, situations and triggers that normally knock your motivation and commitment to your goals.

Have a plan for how you're going to tackle and address these when they come up.

Set goals ahead of time of what you want your commitment to look like.

Catch yourself in the act of negative self-talk. It's not helpful. Certainly, it won't help you develop into your full potential.

The moment you hear yourself trying to quit or give up, stop immediately. Give yourself a slap on the wrist if you need to.

Break the cycle and reframe your thoughts towards a more positive outcome.

Any time you're aware of self-doubt creeping in, focus on WIN:

WIN acronym - what's important now

Remember, if you want to WIN - focus on What's Important Now

How to grow our mental capacity to embrace challenges

With challenge brings change, so change your relationship with adversity.

We need challenges to grow, develop and achieve our full potential. Even though we may feel uncomfortable at the time, we're generally better off from being challenged.

Whenever a sticking point comes up in your life, re-frame your thoughts and look at it as an exciting opportunity to grow.

Further still, instead of just dealing with challenges as and when the come up, how about actively seeking them out?

That might take some practice.

Maybe you start by doing one new gym exercise that you've never done, or find really difficult. Perhaps you have a training or sparring partner who intimidates you a little? Better still, those meetings or classes where you normally sit silently, speak up and contribute.

Paul Stokes Perth Personal Trainer Sports Nutritionist Group Fitness Instructor Massage Therapist

About the author

Paul Stokes

Paul Stokes BSc (Hons) is a Certified Personal Trainer, Accredited Sports Nutritionist, qualified Exercise to Music Instructor, Precision Nutrition coach, Massage Therapist and teaches 8 of the Les Mills Group Exercise programs. He currently works in the Oil & Gas industry as a Wellness Coach, imparting his vast knowledge and experience to improve the quality of life of several hundred offshore workers.

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