IT’S NOT WHAT YOU DON’T KNOW THAT WILL HURT YOU…..
IT’S WHAT YOU DO KNOW, THAT YOU THINK IS TRUE
One thing that gets us all into hot water is our pre-conceived notions. That is, we go into a performance situation expecting certain things, thinking that we know what will happen, only to be completely surprised by reality. For example, your opponent is supposed to be so good and so experienced, that you go into the game expecting to have your hands completely full performance-wise. In fact, you build up the opposition so much in your mind, that when the competition finally starts, you’re totally intimidated and psyched out! In these kinds of situations, what you “knew” was false and set you up to choke!
Our preconcieved notions sometimes make us stupid. They lead us to go into situations with a closed mind. They limit and prevent us from learning new things and improving. If you think you have the “right” answer, why should you take the time to listen to someone else who you think has the “wrong” one? If I’ve learned anything over the years as an athlete, person and/or professional, it’s that the more I know, the more I realize there is to learn! I don’t always have the right answers or right approach. In fact, many times there isn’t one “right” answer, but several different ones. By being open to new possibilities, you expand your knowledge base, improve your skills and, as a consequence, give yourself more of an opportunity to become successful.
If you want to go as far as possible as an athlete or coach, then it’s critical that you maintain this kind of open mindedness. Jettison your preconceived notions, question all the “right” ways of doing things and allow yourself to explore new and different ways. Be suspicious of “experts” who rigidly cling to the one “true” way. If you think that something better might work, start looking for that better way. Don’t be afraid to take risks and fail. Allow your curiosity to spread its wings and fly. With the way our world is changing today, there are always new technologies, training methodologies or strategies to be learned. Don’t be afraid to be a pioneer. Remember, by stretching your limits physically, intellectually and personally, you expand them!