"In all my years working with Olympic athletes, I have learned that focus and concentration are the most important skills. Those who attend to the things that will make them successful, succeed. Those who get distracted are left wondering why they didn’t win. It’s that simple." - Dr. Greg Wells
Focus is effective in helping all of us perform, control stress or improve mental and physical health. Here's an example from the sports world.
Jose Bautista’s famous “bat flip” home run – a three-run shot in the ALCS against Texas on October 13, 2015 is now up there with the most famous home-runs of all time. It is also a perfect example of how an athlete uses focus to get into the Zone.
Here’s how Jose described it in his Player’s Tribune article “Are you Flippin Kidding Me?”:
We knocked in the tying run…the crowd just exploded…50,000 people going crazy…Then I took that lonely walk to the plate with everything on the line….My adrenaline wasn’t 10-out-of-10. It was ten-million-out-of-10. The stage was set. I was so locked in that all I could see was the pitcher. Everything else was out of focus. It was so loud that it was quiet.
What he was describing is the ability to channel the intensity of the moment into his performance by focusing on one and only one thing – the ball. That’s how an elite athlete gets in the Zone and stays there.
It’s no different for you. Each day we need to overcome the distractions of our world to focus on what is most important for us to accomplish if we are to reach our potential. The ability to focus is one of the most important mental skills I want you to learn – and it starts with realizing how important it is.
Today's POWER-UP: Practice Present-Moment Awareness
TAKE A FEW MINUTES TO DO NOTHING BUT COLLECT DATA THROUGH YOUR SENSES. WHAT ARE YOU TOUCHING AND HOW DOES IT FEEL (COLD, WARM, HOT, SMOOTH, ROUGH, SOFT, HARD)? WHAT CAN YOU SEE IN TERMS OF SHAPE, COLOUR, TEXTURE, DISTANCE, CLOSENESS? WHAT SOUNDS ARE CLOSE BY AND FURTHER AWAY AND CAN YOU IDENTIFY THEM ALL? WHAT SMELLS ARE IN THE AIR (YOUR COLOGNE, A CUP OF COFFEE, SOMEONE’S LUNCH)? WHAT TASTE DO YOU HAVE IN YOUR MOUTH (SWEET, SOUR, METALLIC, BITTER)? PRACTICE FOR A FEW MOMENTS EACH DAY AND YOU WILL DEVELOP YOUR ABILITY TO STAY PRESENT, DEVELOP FOCUS, CONNECT TO YOUR BODY AND STAY IN YOUR FLOW STATE.