The power of now for fitness coaches
The power of now (1997) offers specific methods to achieve inner peace. It will help you to live in the present, put an end to your suffering and separate yourself from your mind. By separating yourself from your ego you will accept the present. You reduce the amount of pain you experience and improve your relationships.
The power of now was written by Eckhart Tolle. Born in Germany he now resides in Canada. He was depressed for most of his life until he experiences an "inner transformation". After this transformation, he became a spiritual guide. As a result wrote his best selling book, The power of now.
Why the now is more important than the past or future
The power of now helps your team to worry less. Full focus on the task at hand will produce better results. Shutting out the past and future from your thinking leaves more brain power to perform. Apart from this, the power of now can also help in other areas of life. Personal relationships have to be maintained on and off the pitch. The power of now will help to do it more smoothly.
How Eckart Tolle helped me
Eckhart Tolles philosophy to worry less about the future and past helped me in two ways. By not bringing up the past as much as I used to, I was able to improve the relationship with my wife . This freed up training time and mental power due to fewer fights at home.
The other help was to worry less about the future. Whenever I planned for the future and got worried it impeded my performance in the present. Work and the gym suffered. By worrying less about what was to come I improved. This yielded better results for the future too.
The past and the future never happen
There are many self-destructive ways you can use your mind for. You can trap yourself in cycles of suffering and stop yourself from being happy. All the success in the world with your team won't mean anything if you are not happy.
One moment you might be reminiscing the past. You regret putting time into that promising talent. You wish that you had picked a different warm-up last Friday. The next moment you are worried about the future. Who am I going to draft for the next season? Will there be enough income to support my family? How will the injury of my superstar heal? While these thoughts are whirring in your head you forget the present. The team on the pitch right in front of you who need you know.
This cycle can continue for a very long time. Finally, it becomes a part of you. This pain will become such an important part of your life that you will be afraid to let it go. Then you have become a monster coach. You still get the results. You burn everything left right and center from you to get it.
Most people do not know to what extent ego controls their life. If you look over the last dispute you had with someone you may notice that you overreacted. Just think of all the coaches that have been banned from the pitch. That was not the goal when they started the argument with the referee. Why does the ego do this? Once it has become an integral part of your life it obstructs happiness at every turn. It acts against your own best interests. Whenever two or more egos come together, drama ensues. Just think of the last fight two of your top players had.
The mind causes your pain. Mainly by bringing up memories from the past or planning for the future. This way it occupies your life with regret for the past and anxiety for the future. This prevents you from getting results now. Some coaches use alcohol and drugs to numb themselves against these feelings. This can shroud their minds and impact performance. Nobody has ever won a championship while being drunk all the time.
Some pain is unavoidable. Some players will leave your team for other opportunities. You will have a bad day and lose a game you were supposed to win. You might want to change location and leave your legacy at some place behind. People die and get sick.
When you experience real pain you can accept it for what it is. Once you do this and try not to change it you'll avoid needless further suffering. Less suffering means more focus on the now. More focus on the now means better results and happiness while achieving them.
How to make your way to the present
At the heart of Tolle's philosophy is to live in the present to avoid most of the mental pain that we usually experience. This is a helpful skill for athletes to acquire. Only the present is important as nothing ever occurs in the past or future. Things only happen only in a continuous stream of present moments.
Once you start solving one little problem after another you gain momentum. Gathering data about your performance will be accomplished more easily over time. One of the first challenges is to calm down your mind and gain better control over it. You can do this by shifting your focus from the mind to the body.
Become conscious of your mind and the power it has over you. Be aware of the countless small and subtle ways it influences you. To observe your mind ask yourself "What will my next thought be". If you focus fully on that question it will take some time before the next clear thought arrives. This gives your body time to react.
If you feel like running with your team the next time they train, just follow that impulse. You can get great results by listening to your body more. This sharpens your intuition, a key component of a successful coach. Another technique is active waiting. This helps to get fully focused on your body.
Zen masters used to sneak up to their pupils and to hit them. They had their eyes closed. The waiting forced the students to complete concentrate on their bodies. Thus they were able to sense the approaching masters and evade the attack. Imagine your team could do something like this on the pitch. so "Be like a servant waiting for the return of your master" to get in this state and teach your team.
Living in the present does not mean to develop a passive external behavior. If you are stuck in the mud don't simply tell yourself that you always wanted to be stuck in the mud. Instead, free yourself without panicking.
You and your team need to focus on the now. Inch by inch, play by play you will make your way. Inch by inch and play by play you will win the season. When analyses need to be done, analyse the past to act in the present. When you need future results, make a plan to know better what to do in the present. The present is all that matters.
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