Do you prepare for each and every performance? How well do you
make yourself ready to be at your best? Do you have a specific plan
for getting psyched up to your optimal levels? Peak performers have
strategies they use to get into the right mental, physical and emotional
state to perform to their potential.
Have you ever taken an inventory of your ability to prepare mentally?
Why not take one right now?
Do You Fail To Prepare Or Prepare To Fail?
Most people don't prepare to fail - they just fail to prepare.
If you make a concerted effort to prepare specifically, instead
of just hoping you will perform well, then you often create a more
successful outcome. Control as much of your fate as possible by
taking your preparation into your own hands.
The Top Twenty Preparation Strategies
I have identified twenty success strategies which top performers
utilize. They are mental, physical and emotional tools used to prepare
fully for any performance.
To find your Mental Preparation Quotient, simply read each factor
and give yourself a rating on it from 1 (I do not have this skill)
to 5 (I have this skill somewhat) to 10 (I really have this skill),
or anywhere in between. Total your score and see the chart at the
end for your MPQ.
People who mentally prepare successfully utilize these strategies
and skills. Do you make these a part of your success plan?
1. Make an overall game plan.
2. Make back-up and emergency contingency plans.
3. Eat specific meals at specific times to maintain blood chemistry.
4. Check all equipment you will use ahead of time.
5. Stretch and exercise to burn off excess nervous energy.
6. Visualize your success in the performance.
7. Warm-up everything you will use in your performance.
8. Seek a coach or confidant who will listen to you.
9. Wear clothes that make you feel confident.
10. Provide some quiet time for yourself.
11. Check out the venue where you will perform.
12. Use positive self-talk and positive imagery.
13. Watch your best performances on video tape.
14. Be around people who support you and make you feel confident.
15. Be around people who are excellent models of mental toughness.
16. Know your opening tactics cold so they are automatic.
17. Read your mental training journal for evidence of past successes.
18. Maintain a consistent, organized schedule so there is no last-minute
19. Seek support staff to reduce pressure on yourself.
20. Stay tuned to any last minute time or program changes for your
Scoring Your Mental Preparation Quotient (MPQ)
If you scored 0-49 you are in the beginning stages of learning
how to prepare for performances. Absorb all you can.
If you scored 50-99 you are making some headway, but still
have much to learn. Jump in head first.
If you scored 100-149 you are building your ability to prepare
fully. Keep up the good work.
If you scored 150-200 you have quite a strong mental preparation
quotient profile. Congratulations!
The Next Step Is Yours
Will you make the decision to improve your ability to prepare
as well as possible, starting right now? If you do, the results
will amaze you. Ask yourself these questions: 1. What factors from
the above list can I begin doing or improve on right now? 2. What
larger changes do I need to make in my life to reach the upper levels
of a solid Mental Preparation Quotient?
Copyright © 2000-2008 Bill Cole, MS, MA. All rights reserved.
Bill Cole, MS, MA, a leading authority on sports psychology, peak performance,
mental toughness and coaching, is founder and CEO of William
B. Cole Consultants, a consulting firm that helps sports teams and individuals
achieve more success. He is also the Founder and President of the International
Mental Game Coaching Association, an organization dedicated to advancing
the research, development, professionalism and growth of mental game coaching
worldwide. He is a multiple Hall-Of-Fame honoree as an athlete, coach and school
alumnus, an award-winning scholar-athlete, published author of books and articles,
and has coached at the highest levels of major-league pro sports and big-time