The Newest Book
What makes any book practical is that it’s highly effective at solving important problems and creating significant breakthroughs. The greatest challenge for the reader of any self-help book is skillfully applying the knowledge that they’ve acquired to make important changes.
This book is intentionally designed to do that and not simply fill your mind with good ideas about sports psychology that you won’t know how to implement. Every athlete is like a diamond with its many unique facets. Individual athletes will use the same information to make many different decisions and changes. That’s where the magic is in mental game development. The magic is in discovering what works most powerfully for you as an individual athlete.
This book solves this critical challenge by “baking” the idea of implementation into the practices and techniques that you’ll learn in this book. As you do your daily meditations, you’ll have already begun to implement changes at the same time. Each day you read a few paragraphs about a mental game topic. Then you actively engage your imagination for 15 minutes and see, feel and hear yourself making improvements in the ways that you train and compete.
Most sports are complex. We’ll quickly grow bored with sports that don’t challenge us. A strong mental game helps us manage a sport’s complexity without becoming overwhelmed and in a state of analysis paralysis. The biggest mental game mistake that athletes routinely make is that they overuse their problem-solving skills and underuse their imaginative skills as they attempt to manage their sports’ complexity.
This book focuses primarily on developing your imaginative skills. Most readers already have or can develop sufficient problem-solving skills to play sports well. Our educational systems are heavily biased toward problem-solving skill development and do very little, if any, imaginative skill development.
For most athletes, playing at their highest levels or “in the zone” is an unpredictable event. They don’t know why it only happens sporadically. The reason that performing in the zone is only sporadic for most athletes is that they haven’t developed their imaginative skills sufficiently. The central task of a strong mental game is managing our thinking, emotions, and physical states in order to perform at our highest levels. We apply our mental game knowledge to develop ourself and make important changes so that we can perform at our highest levels. This kind of learning and skill development is primarily an imaginative process.
Our imagination is the engine of high-performance sports. As athletes become more skillful with their imaginations in their mental and physical practices, they can consistently perform in the zone in training and competitions. That’s because performing in the zone is primarily an imaginative skill.
This is the most advanced of my books in terms of imaginative skill development. It will challenge you to use your imagination in new and powerful ways. Most meditation methods try to have you remove most, if not all, thoughts from your mind. My method is the opposite. I want you to fill your mind with the right kinds of thoughts. I’ll teach you to use your imagination as a powerful lever for making important changes and transformations.
This is a sports psychology workbook rather than a book about sports psychology theory. Most sports psychology books entertain, motivate and educate the reader with stories, inspirational quotes and anecdotes. This book is different. You'll find no entertaining or motivational stories in this book. This book is a map to guide you on your journey to athletic excellence. It’s filled with short meditations that you'll do daily.
I developed my sports psychology and meditation books because I saw the necessity for a system that could support athletes and people from every walk of life in the development of their mental games between our meetings. A sports psychology or meditation system has to provide a way of helping us change our thinking and our behavior. I found other approaches to development were highly focused on changing thinking while the behavioral part was lacking a systematic approach to implement. Other approaches seemed be suggesting that all we need for meaningful change to occur are some sound principles and inspirational stories. Then the clients would magically know how to apply them skillfully in their situations.
My books are essentially handbooks of mental game tools that you use on a daily basis rather than a collection of ideas that you read about and try to implement. I developed my books beginning with the emphasis on implementing meaningful change and then supported the practices with just enough background to provide context.
If you purchase one of my books and try to read it like a novel, you'll find some helpful ideas, but you'll be missing the main purpose and what's unique about the books. I don't have any inspirational or motivational stories in my books. I provide you with the tools you need to inspire and motivate yourself. With daily meditation, you'll read a couple paragraphs and then put your imagination into gear and see, feel and hear where your imagination leads you. You'll find that your imagination, with some practice, will be highly skilled at knowing how to move back and forth efficiently between thought and action. The experiences you'll have in your mental practices will lead to specific and effective strategies of getting into action and moving forward rapidly.