What is it about me that helps me to succeed and hinders me from achieving?
We all ask ourselves this question from time to time. There are times when we seem to get things done – especially important things – we seem to thrive. Sometimes we really struggle – and can’t explain why – we just about survive.
It can be more frustrating when we see others doing, with apparent ease, what we can suddenly find challenging.
It can be as mundane as avoiding hill walking because we don’t like heights when others seem to leap from boulder to boulder without a second thought.
It's not because we don’t know how to walk. The difference lies in the way we approach things in our minds. We can have the same skills, knowledge, experience and education as the next person but we can still respond differently to even the most basic changes in our lives.
This is where SELF AWARENESS comes in. We know it is important. If we can understand why we succeed or don’t succeed we will often be able to do something about it.
We tend to be good at understanding what we do (our behaviours) and how we feel (or emotions).
We tend not be able to describe or understand our mental responses to what happens to us and around us anywhere near as well. Because “how we think” is, in a sense, “invisible”.
Now with the development of the Mental Toughness concept we can understand it and, through, the development of some psychometric measures we can begin to develop that important level of self awareness..
Mental Toughness is not describing how macho you are. It is a well researched psychological concept which describes a spectrum covering the range of mental responses to a situation that can be made. This has 8 components, anyone one of which can be a source of hindrance, if only we knew which one. For some of us it will be more than one of those.
For example, we are asked to do something challenging. We hesitate. Why?
It could be because we don’t think we are good enough; we feel anxiety coming on; we cant get excited about it; we don’t feel like making the effort, we have never done this before and think we’ll fail; we’ve not learned how to do this; we don’t think we have the ability to do this (even when we really can) and sometimes we feel we can’t bring others with us. Or indeed a combination of these.
Once we have self awareness we can direct attention to what is needed. Without it we wont know where to start.
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SO HOW CAN MENTAL TOUGHNESS HELP ME?