Our dear Nigerian athletes: men and women of courage. You might not have had the opportunity to hear from millions of Nigerians, but we appreciate your courage, dedication and patriotism. Thank you for lifting our flag high, thank you for being proud to win for us.
The Rio Olympics is here; let this letter of world class peak performance techniques be a guide to help you function at your best. You’ve worked hard, now is the time to reveal the result of your practice to the world. Nevertheless, 80% of your performance will be tied to your psychology- your mind. This is seen directly in the way your mind affects your brain, which in turn affects your body and its muscles. However, it’s only when you have thoroughly practiced that you develop the confidence and self assurance upon which a positive mental attitude depends.
Success is less about a gift or talent at work but about the development of the traits of persistence, willpower, consistency, discipline, courage and grit. For every event your confidence will be generated from competence, knowing the amount of time and effort you’ve put in to practice.
Best in the World… Believe It
First, you must believe you’re the best in the world and say this to yourself continually. Self talk is a key to rewiring the brain for success. Your determination to win must progress to desperation to win. The brain requires this kind of desperation.
Practice. Practice. Practice
Small hinges move big doors and minor adjustments lead to major improvements. The micro seconds in every event counts, just as the micro improvements in your daily practice routines count. Remember, if you win by a micro second or by an inch it isn’t because you’re ten times better but because you paid more attention to every detail of your preparation.
Your coach will have a daily routine for you, nonetheless, have your own extra daily routine. This creates what is called the differentiation factor. Have an ‘inner coach’, as long as your ‘inner coach’ still has room inside you to push harder don’t restrict him to the praises or accolades of your coach. Push until you think you can’t push anymore, yet, push a little harder then major developments will take place in you both physically and mentally.
Practice with periodicity: rhythms or intervals of intense exercises with rest juxtaposed continually. Practice intensely Mondays to Saturdays then rest on Sunday. If you improve by one percent every day, then in seventy days you will be twice as good. Hence, prepare as much physically as you would mentally and spiritually. Feed your spirit with time in the presence of your maker; your soul with inspirational materials; and your body with a strict recommended diet.
Use the Creative Power of Your Mind
Surround yourself with pictures of what you desire; pictures to enhance your imagination.
Build great self esteem by recalling periods in your life when you performed exceptionally well. Replay them to yourself mentally, enjoying the exhilaration of that moment and realize that those times were not happenstance but a manifestation of your inherent potential. Draw on the power of such exciting moments by walking back mentally, recalling all the circumstances around you that preceded such a prodigious performance. For example your physiology- how you moved your body or a song you listened to before the event. My point is if you repeat those circumstances which you had direct control over, you will get the same results.
Finally, master your emotions; they affect your brain, your body, then your performance. Use the power of choice to choose your response to every situation; the power of focus to direct your thoughts on things that will make you happy; then, chin up, chest out, walk tall, moving your body like a champion and you will change your emotions instantly.
Putting all these to work will guarantee that you maximize all the resources at your disposal within you to function at your peak for every event.
‘’We do not succeed based on our potential but based on how easily we can draw on our potential at will when it matters most’’ (Iyore Ogbuigwe)
I will see you all at the stands as you wear your medals.
To our men and women of honour.
To our patriots.
To the lovers of our nation.
To our athletes at the Rio Olympics 2016.
We celebrate you.