How can journaling help you get over a mental block or fears in general?

[Edited transcript below]

How can journaling help you get over a mental block or fears in general?

I love this one because athletes tend to think of journaling like homework or an assignment. The athletes who likely already journal do it because a parent does or encouraged them to do it. 

Our brain is designed to keep us safe. The way that it does that is by latching onto negatives and bad things. It focuses on the things we are not doing that we should be doing. 

And it’s all in an attempt to keep us safe. Or protect us from something bad. That’s what it does. And so if you’re just sitting there thinking about your day, you’re probably thinking about the scary things, the thing that you should have done that you didn’t. You’re thinking about the person that was mean.. etc. That is where your brain is going to go first, naturally. 

The thing that we really want to do is think about what is trust and real. What did you actually do today? What were all the good things? 

And so journaling is a way to get you out of your head.  It’s a way to process what actually happened to you and helps you change your thinking patterns from negative to positive. 

It helps you learn to connect the dots and realize, “Oh, when I do this, this good thing happens.”

It also allows you to process situations.  For example, if a coach says something hurtful to you, it can really sting and cause you to dwell on the situation which distracts you. So you can continue letting it stay in your mind and feel hurt and upset or you can write about it. As you write about it, you may notice that your coach really didn’t say what you heard or meant it in another way. 

You may realize “oh, wait, my coach didn’t say I was a terrible cheerleader and they don’t want me on their team. They just said, hey, go for it.” “If you don’t get this skill, I’m going to have to switch you with so and so. ” Well, they’re doing this skill, so that just gives me more of a chance to work on it. 

Writing things down helps you process easier and more accurately. 

Why do athletes need to journal to be successful?

Kids and teens are given so much feedback. Coaches tell them what to do. Parents tell them what to do. Clean your room, do your homework, do this math assignment and do it this way. It’s do this, feel this, be this, right?

There’s so much. And so they don’t sit and think about how do I feel about this? What do I do about this? How do I think? 

So journaling is a way that they can learn what am I thinking? What am I feeling? And all of that related to sports. They can be in control. If you can control your thoughts and you know how you’re thinking and you’re aware of certain things.

Like my whole level one program, the first three months of my program, is all about awareness. It’s teaching them to pay attention to what they’re thinking and feeling so that they’re empowered. When something is happening in the moment, they can choose a different way. 

So if someone’s being mean to them, it’s not that “something’s wrong with me.” They said this, which means this. It’s, “What could they have meant? What can I do differently?”

Magic happens as you write things down and as you process on paper. So it’s so good. 

Journaling brings you into reality, helps you get in tune with your thoughts and feelings, and empowers you to make good choices.

I love journaling. I’m all for it. If you want to begin but aren’t sure where to start, I have a free resource for you. You can download 1-month of journal prompts for confident athletes by clicking here

I’m a big fan of journaling. Do it every day.

That's it! Now it's your turn.

Decide right now one way that you will use what you learned in this training to try something new this week at practice. What did you learn in this training that stood out to you? What will you do differently at practice this week to apply what you learned? I would love to support you and offer you a little accountability, so share that with us in the comments below. 

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Until next time, remember that a mental block is simply a challenge you are working through. You are strong, can do hard things, and have totally got this!

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