High performers face a deal with their demons.
Specifically, the more they want something and strive towards, the more their demons will surface. The doubts, the worries, the anxiety, the rage. They’re the other side of the coin.
There is, of course, a plethora of advice out there, detailing the use of mental skills as a remedy for the existence of demons. However, the evidence supporting their use within sport is limited and not watertight as their prepreceding reputation may suggest.
In fact, research suggests that trying to get rid of demons results in the beast growing instead of diminishing!
A deal must be struck. You cannot out-run, out-play, out-fight, your own shadow. Acceptance of its existence, its charteristics, its contours may be more promising.
High performers know that there are no shortcuts. No gimmicks. Instead, it takes time, humility, and honesty.
Our demons cannot be removed. They need to be faced up to and accepted as the price tag of pursuing our deepest hopes.
Did this post make you pause and think? Even just for a moment? Think someone else you know may like it? Sharing it with them would be greatly appreciated. Also, check out the ‘Mastering the Nerves‘ course, which outlines some ways of developing our capacity to face our performance demons and be at our best in our respective performance domains.