Awareness - Again! For the Journey

September 23, 2014

Awareness is imperative if you intend to be successful so I am coming back to awareness because it is so important.  Its importance was reinforced when I met and talked with an ex professional footballer is now working extensively with Sporting Chance and a sprint coach who himself has competed nationally (both were ex-students of mine!) about performance.  Awareness is important in any endeavor but we as athletes need to be fully aware of our own strengths and areas of development.  This will allow us to concentrate on our strengths during competition, when it matters, to give ourselves the greatest opportunity to be successful and get the win.  We need to be well versed in our strengths so that we can do them without thinking; we can just play.  So in training we need work on all aspects of our game so that this can be achieved but also time needs to be spent on our areas of development to get them to a point where they can no longer be called weaknesses.  This is hard work which takes determination and dedication.  The mentality to have here is to concentrate solely on the things within your control and ignore everything else.  Focus on perfecting the skill (Perfection can never be achieved as there are always improvement that can be made but should be aspired to), to master the skill so it can be completed effortlessly and without thinking during competition.  To enhance awareness keep a journal where you can reflect on your training and competitions.  Within this journal also look at your sport to identify what exactly is required for you to be successful and win.  Be very specific to get as much information as you can.  If passing is important in your sport then what type of passes are needed? 

Being fully aware also allows you to be ‘play to win’.  This is because you know what is required to win but you also understand how your strengths will allow you to do this.  Playing to win brings the focus onto you as an athlete and your awareness because you are concentrating on your strengths during competition but are aware of others competing in the same environment and the things they are good at.  A lack of awareness leads to a mentality of playing not to lose.  This is because you are not fully aware of what is needed so can’t fully commitment to your strengths to be successful.  Both the sprint coach and ex pro reinforced this message of awareness being so important to performance which is pleasing as awareness is a major part of a book I’ve written called the Journey on what is needed to be successful.  The Journey will be out at the end of September and information can be found on my website (http://www.pinnacleperformance.co.uk/books-by-pinnacle-performance.php).  The Journey has been written so that it appeals to athletes and coaches alike giving them practical suggestions to improve that are supported by real life examples.

 

The Mental Skills of the World Cup in Brazil 2014

June 12, 2014

The World Cup 2014 in Brazil is starting today and this festival of football will provide lots examples of the importance of the mental side of the game in major tournaments.  I am going to present the importance of the mental skills and qualities needed for a player to be successful in the World Cup.  This is based on the book I have written (to be published very soon!) on the elements needed for success and winning and what better place to be successful and win than the biggest stage in wor...


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Sean Dyche and why Awareness is important for Football Managers and Premier League Football

April 26, 2014

Awareness is one of the most essential components of success and for winning in football. As a football manager you need to be aware of yourself, your strengths, your weaknesses, your philosophy of coaching and your beliefs. You also need to be aware of the environment in which you find yourself managing.  Finally you need to be aware of the competition and the other teams in the division to ensure that give your team the best chance of success.  Sean Dyche, manager of Burnley Football Club h...
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Playing like jumpers for goal posts in the fight for relegation and promotion in the Football League

April 18, 2014

The football league is drawing to its conclusion and there are teams fighting for relegation and promotion.  This is why love football but this time of the season is fascinating from a mental perspective.  Inevitably teams will miss out on the prize of staying up and be relegated or promotion to the league above.  These teams need to play the game and not the occasion (A colleague of mine used this during a conversion and I think it’s brilliant) and they need to play to win as opposed playi...


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Dealing with the 'decision' in Youth Football

April 14, 2014

This time of year is incredibly important for young professional football players. Around this time decisions are being made on youth team players up and down the country on who will be receiving professional contracts and join the professional ranks.  Young players must realise that playing football is a very difficult and demanding Journey.  For the majority this is a very difficult time as some will receive a NO, however, for others the answer will be a yes and a contract will be given.  I...


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Sean Dyche – Burnley Manager, a Great Example of Leadership who shows the Building Blocks Needed for Success (and Premier League Football!)

April 12, 2014

Sean Dyche is manager of Burnley football club and one of the brightest young English managers in the game. He has shown excellent leadership qualities throughout the 2013/14 Championship season. Burnley are on the brink of Premier league football next year with just one win needed to guarantee football in the Premier league for the second time in their illustrious history.  ‘Ginger Mourinho’ (or should Mourinho be known as ‘Silver Dyche’?) as he is known to the fans has been nominate...

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Awareness and it's links to Belief

September 12, 2013
Awareness has been highlighted by many as a key indicator of success in a range of performance environments.   It is arguably the most important ingredient for belief as every other skill, quality and task you have and undertake can be traced back to awareness.  Being aware will give you an insight into your beliefs and whether they are positive or holding you back.  If you are aware then this will give you knowledge and if you have knowledge then you know what you need to do to and the direc...

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Never Give Up. The Ups and Downs of the Journey - Justin Rose

June 23, 2013
'Never Never Never Give Up' - Winston Churchill

Success takes a long time. There is a lot of things that have to be in place for success to happen, there is a lot of learning to take place. There will be ups and there will be downs.  You learn more from the downs and it allows you to develop strategies to overcome them to come back stronger.  However the downs hurt, they can hurt real bad and you will have feelings of wanting to quit, to give up.  It takes mental toughness to fight through thi...

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Intimidation in Sport - Are you a Wolf?

June 9, 2013


I was on a recent train journey and I needed something to read so I picked up a copy of New Scientist (1 June 2013). Several of the articles took my eye with immediate links to sport psychology.  The one that really took my eye was from Ecology around intimidation and how predators influence the behaviours of their prey.  This got me thinking (I was visiting a different part of the library, see my previous blog post on this in sport psychology).  Intimidation plays an important part in sport ...

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One pass doesn't make you a bad player - Recovering from school boy errors in football

May 30, 2013
What separates good players from great players is their ability to recover from School Boy Errors (SBEs) or mistakes.  Mistakes and errors are a natural part of learning and development.  Failure is only feedback and we must use this feedback quickly.  Everyone fails at some stage and some of the greatest and most successful people in business and sport have been labeled a failure but they have taken the feedback and learnt from it and gone on to achieve amazing things.  The question is how d...

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The Journey: The Elements for Success, Winning and Increased Performance in Sport, Business and Life


David Harrison Using sport psychology principles and performance psychology strategies from elite sport and business this blog highlights the elements needed for success, winning and increased performance. Whether lacking motivation, struggling to manage pressure or loss of confidence; the posts in this blog can help.

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