Maybe you have heard someone saying ”Overthinking causes problems that weren’t there in the first place”. You might just go with it and ignore it. However it is completely true. Studies have shown that there is a strong link between over thinking and failing at something you have practised countless of times before.
To me as an athlete, this can be very annoying. Let’s say that I have practised a gate sequence (Canoe Slalom) countless of times. However on the day of racing I can not do it successfully. Now let’s make a school musical an example. Imagine a school music recital; your son’s performing for the first time. He’s practised his solo for weeks and can play and sing it perfectly – ”automatically” you could say. He’s all alone when the curtain goes up, and as it does he reminds himself to stand up straight, to smile, and to project his voice and play he’s guitar gently. He starts to focus on his finger movement, and for the first time in weeks he plucks the wrong string and sings the wrong note.
That is exactly what happens when you are over thinking about something at high pressure moments. Don’t get me wrong, when you are learning something new you need to always be thinking about it. That is because you haven’t mastered it yet. I tried to put this into very simple words, however it is all to do with these 2 kinds of memories. I am not covering that because you are reading a website, not a science book.
So next time you are doing a presentation to your boss, don’t start to think hard, just relax and your brain will be relaxed. Just the same with sports performance. For any sport, if you are really thinking about what you have to do at the start line, you will not reach your maximum potential. Just keep your mind clear!
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