In sports (and life), mastery consists of strengthening and improving your physical, mental, technical, and tactical skills. This takes expectations, dedication, and motivation:
Expectation: Your mindset is formed by a combined interaction of thoughts, and corresponding emotions and images. The mindset people adopt have everything to do with their judgment of anything (Francesca & Pisano, 2014). Expectations are your goals and your dreams. It's what you set your sights on and it's the journey you choose to take.
Dedication: making the time to train, practice, and compete to the best of your abilities. This includes preparation, to focus in the moment, reflect, and to rest and recover.
Whether an elite athlete or first timer, athletes will mistake shortcutting for efficiency. In this case, shortcutting involves eliminating things that seem like less of a priority, to meet an expectation, or to achieve a goal, faster. Unfortunately, shortcutting only leads to setbacks and delays.
On the other hand, efficiency involves taking the time to learn through trial and error, acquiring a skill by developing the foundational elements that go into that skill, and consistent repetition to create a habit. In time, that habit leads to efficiency because your body and mind adjust to the challenge of learning and acquiring a skill to make it a functional action for you.
Once you are able to habituate simple skills, you can soon connect the dots to acquire more complex and demanding skills, like when children progresses from learning to crawl, then to walk, and soon enough they are running! In the beginning, it’s easy to see success and improvement. Like when a person starts a strength and conditioning program, after that first workout that person feels tired, sweaty, and a sense of accomplishment. The reward is feeling sore afterwards because it’s a reminder that your body is getting stronger! For elite athletes, acquiring a new skill set, becoming more efficient, and seeing improvement becomes harder to attain and less noticeable. Elite athletes are working toward that 1% gain.
Whether you are a beginner or elite athlete, the journey is the same. It starts by creating the process and following through.
Motivation: rhetoric focuses your thoughts. When you focus your thoughts, you create your mindset and outlook on your life events. Focus your lens. Like a camera, turn that lens away from the negativity, the chaos, the hate, and self doubt. It defines your values, and guides the choices you make.
Lastly, dare to be different. Change is part of the process, this includes success, accomplishments, failures, mistakes, and losing. They are landmarks toward progress.
Set the standard with positivity, optimism, process, and purpose.