Sport is not just about winning or losing, but sometimes coaches get lost in this trap. The trap of allowing results determine their self worth, just as players allow their performance to determine how they feel about themselves. Yesterday, I listened to Baroness Sue Campbell at the Global Coach House conference, and she emphasized "Good coaches make good athletes, whereas great coaches make great people". This is everything I believe, and is in line with my philosophy used within my applied psychology work. I had the privledge to listen to many inspiring leaders over the past couple of days who have reinforced my beliefs and also what I teach in my performance psychology practice.
Self esteem is how you value yourself and your evaluation of self worth. I see it frequently, when a young person's self worth is based on their sporting ability. They feel good when they have played well, and feel bad when things haven't went their way. And for maladaptive perfectionists, they probably rarely feel good because of the unattainable expectations they put on themselves.
Society often puts us into boxes, and even in the sports field. I have seen it many times, where an athlete is in a sport for a reason other than enjoyment. Whether it be that their parents like the sport, maybe the parent either succeeded or failed in the sport, or because they feel pressure to play that sport. By allowing young people to make their own choices on their sport, will enhance their intrinsic motivation, and in turn, keep more young people participating.
This goes in line with teaching individuality. Teaching young people to be themselves. I continue to emphasise uniqueness and ways to feel good about being different. To embrace who you are, and be okay to stand out and go against the grain. As athletes, we do that and also as coaches. We may not always conform to the societal norm...work a 9-5 job, go home, make dinner, watch some tv. As athletes, and coaches, we put in time and effort, we miss social engagements, and family events. We get up early to train, we stay up late. We spend money and time trying to be the best we can be. We spend many hours training and competing. We are evaluated constantly and probably constantly evaluate self. So with all of this, the most important thing that will keep us striving for excellence, is to enjoy. To enjoy what we do. To love what we do. To have passion. To feel good as a person. To value self and have confidence, not only in ability, but in ourselves as people. As coaches and leaders, I feel it's our duty to promote good people and I am glad that this is also what the pioneers of sporting change believe too. What action can you take today to promote good people in sport?
I really enjoyed delivering to a great bunch of participants at my most recent performance psychology workshop. I recieved a lot of positive feedback which you can see on my testimonial page.
The participants said by the end of the workshop they were able to: "recognize different levels of confidence and esteem"; "how different factors can effect confidence" and "how to deal with anxiety by turning it into a positive"
It also allowed for participants to "understand their self more, learn new skills and adapt current abilities"
I want to say a huge thank you to all participants and their input and inspiration to each other. Group discussions, and learning from each other was noted as a positive as well it being a laid back and interactive environment. Please see the above photo for participants ideas on building confidence.
I am also thankful for Kate Cooper and the Herballife team being very cooperative with the venue, and providing a great learning environment. I apologise for the little technical glitch, and will have that resolved for the next workshop! Lets continue to work together to ensure people are confident in, not only the things they do, but for who they are.
Leadership: Are you bringing out the best in others?
I had the privledge of sharing my knowledge of psychology with the swim coordinators and swim teachers at Edinburgh Leisure. I covered the topics of leadership, motivation and communication in a three hour workshop at the Royal Commonwealth Pool.
When reflecting on a Good Leader, the participants came up with qualities in line with the research and also, were able to recall the memories of being around a positive leader.
A good leader:
Gives praise and encouragement
Listens and doesn't interrupt
Gives people responsibility
Helps with goals
Enjoys what they do
Gives you time and listens
Organised and prepared
You have trust in them to stand up for you
So what does the person who makes you feel the worst? Who de-motivates you or makes you feel bad?
So are you a good leader or a bad?
A lot of being a good leader comes down to communication. We can tell a lot about a persons feelings from their non verbal body language. In fact, it's supposed to tell you more than words itself. Being a good leader is someone who is intuitive and can pick up non-verbal cues.
Tracy Donachie, MSc in Performance Psychology.