Too small or too lazy?

The mindset grow orientedmindset

A growth-oriented mindset is revealed when an athlete is convinced that his/her most basic skills can be developed through dedication and hard work, with the knowledge that intelligence and talent are only the starting point. This idea of themselves lays the foundations for researching and appreciating learning and creates a resistance to adversity essential to achieving a great result.

Based on these ideas, one can say that an athlete with a growth-oriented mentality in his/her daily life and in the most stressful events demonstrates these beliefs:

  1. You grow up, you learn.
  2. Intelligence and talent are the basic start point of any success story
  3. Challenges and mistakes are the only opportunity to learn
  4. Maximum commitment, greater competence
  5. Time and hard work are the best ways to improve
  6. Giving up on commitment is the only real kind of failure
  7. Setbacks are a sign of the need to work harder and more consciously
  8. Competitors’ success is stimulating and motivating
  9. Failure is the best learning tool
  10. Feedback and criticism are essential for progress and development

How often do you think like that?

The secrets inside the motivation

The understanding of motivational processes is undoubtedly one of the topics that has always aroused the interest of sports psychology scholars.

Once they asked the great mountaineer George Mallory (1886-1924) why he wanted to climb Everest and he answered “Because is there.”

In few words he explained the inwardness and intensity of the motivation but it will take decades to begin to understand what it is; what it is “this hypothetical construct used to describe the internal and/or external forces that produce the beginning, direction, intensity and persistence of behavior” (Vallerand and Thill, 1993).

To reflect, what is your concept of:

  • Commitment
  • Difficulty of the task
  • Impossible is nothing! Is it true or not? And why?
  • How do you learn to set short and long-term goals?


Today thought is commitment

Commitment is today an important thought to place at the centre of our daily lives.

Commitment is for the athletes and their staff who train in a period that was usually full of competitions, while today this happens only for some sports. Commitment is also feeling that your body does not respond to our stimulations as it did, because we have not trained or only partially trained.

Commitment is to keep our motivation and enthusiasm high even if we do not know what will happen in the coming months. Never as now it’s necessary to accept the present we live in, live it intensely without the certainties of the past and the precise planning of the future.

Commitment is also required in living everyday life in a responsible way, our habits or carelessness can change not only our lives but also those of other people. We prevent with our actions the spread of the virus, so we must be careful and think that the enemy even if it is not visible is still present.

Juventus is victim o itself

Juventus with AC Milan had the opportunity to close the championship. They didn’t succeed, even though they were 2-0 up.               They lost 4-2.

Juventus damage themselves, even if the opponents try their best to get a success. They are so strong and cynical that they don’t give importance to these results given advantage in the standings. I don’t think so.

The question in my opinion is simple: 8 consecutive championships won in a row determine beliefs, expectations and motivations.The culture of this team, leads it to be convinced that at the end the championship will be won and, therefore, to take these risks for a tendency of the players and the coach not to give relevance for the future. Obviously the players live their emotions and today they cannot be satisfied.

In my opinion they have to change this way of living the championship. Sarri says they played very well for 60 minutes, but if you turn off, the others take advantage of it and put you under.

Sarri says they played very well for 60 minutes, but if you turn off, the others take advantage of it and put you under. Between excellent and poor they have to find a solution, otherwise they will always take the field with this approach that in every single match can cause continuous problems.

Expectations to win the game anyway, even with these mental blocks, are a performance killer, because you think you will win without doing what it takes to win.

Who is not able to listen

One type of coaches who do not know how to listen is represented by those becoming impatient when they listen to their athletes. They show this reaction by interrupting them and starting to talk, explaining what should be done and accompanying the words with aggressive or devaluing behaviors what had been expressed by athletes previously. Faced with this wrong way of dealing with a situation and in order to change this attitude, the coaches should ask themselves what reactions determine this behavior in athletes. They believe that, after this communication, the athletes are more motivated to take initiatives and to be autonomous in their work, or they are convinced that this kind of response generates the opposite effect: fear of the coach, conviction of not being understood and awareness that the only thing to get along is to follow to the letter the instructions they give them without ever objecting.

This type of coaches in front of the athletes’ words often thinks that:

  • “They always have a reason to complain, I don’t even listen to them anymore.”
  • “Young people today don’t want to sacrifice themselves anymore, talking to them is a waste of breath.”
  • “I’m here to train, not talk.”
  • “Any excuse is good for quitting.”
  • “They have to do what I say and not on their own.”

It must be said that every coach sometimes manifests these thoughts and it is equally possible that the young athletes in certain situations act in this way. So what characterizes the coaches who listen less than their colleagues is not the total absence or presence of these ideas but rather their frequency. Coaches who listen have these thoughts in situations where their athletes actually act in this way. The more impulsive coaches, on the contrary, interpret much more frequently the demands and actions of their athletes in this way.

Do you know how to listen your athletes?

The ability to listen consists of understanding what others are saying, showing them interest in their message. It is important for the coaches to know if and to what extent they have developed this competence. For this purpose they may reflect on some issues that may help to refine their awareness of this psychological competence, and ask themselves:

  • Do I spend time listening to my athletes?
  • How do I show this willingness?
  • How often do I think that athletes do not understand me or are they not very motivated?
  • How do I react to the indifference, disappointment, anger, and joy of the athletes?

Coaches who listen communicate in this way:

  • They use the words of others to make them understand that they’ve listened to them.
  • They repeat, paraphrasing what they’ve heard.
  • They use expressions like “If I understand correctly, you mean…” or “You’re telling me it’s like this for you… and this way…”
  • They use non-verbal language in a manner consistent with the content of their message, so they look at the athlete or group and assume a body position facing them…
  • Recognise other people’s moods, emphasizing their value, striving to reduce their intensity or increase it according to the situation.
  • They know how to summarize the opinions of others, highlighting the value of individual and/or collective contributions in achieving the objectives

The team rigid mindset is the reason for the defeats

The most serious problem for a team and athletes is to think they are good.

This belief immediately puts people in a condition of greater satisfaction and fuels the expectation that everything will go well as they expect, so we will win.

Feeling fit and being aware of your personal and team skills is certainly important. Often teams think that this condition is enough to achieve success. They don’t understand that it is necessary but not enough.

To play at a high level, you have to have the skills of a high level team. Then you have to prove it on the pitch.

Arrigo Sacchi says that the motivation must be exceptional, because on this basis the player is constantly striving to improve himself. That’s what Carol Dweck has called a growth-mindset. Those who don’t demonstrate it are destined to have what the coaches say: a mental block. In other words, these players have a rigid mentality that leads them to think that their talent and fitness are enough to be effective in their work.

Serious mistake. They will strategie the match without the motivation to play at the best. They will enter with the conviction that they will play well so spontaneously, and when faced with the difficulties of the match they will not be ready to adapt, because they hadn’t foreseen it.

Motivation? Ballet barefoot on concrete while raining.

One of the most shared videos in the last few days features a boy from the Leap of Dance Academy, a Nigerian dance school. In the video we see him continuing to practice his pirouettes despite the incessant rain.

Barefoot and completely wet, his obstinacy has become a symbol of how much a dancer can sacrifice to follow his dream. “Behind those fanciful and elegant costumes there is hard work” – reads the caption of the video – “Even with very few resources our students continue to train to give the best. We don’t want to discourage anyone, but it is important to show the level of their commitment and dedication. Who wouldn’t be proud? They are ready to dance under any conditions”.Si allena scalzo sotto la pioggia: questo giovanissimo ballerino ha conquistato tutti