Effort As A Habit
Working hard is one of the most important habits needed to foster successful outcomes. While many people think innate talent is more crucial, it’s effort that propels elite athletes to their achievements. Why is this so important for athletes of any level? Because it makes success more under your control!
The first step is to avoid the talent trap. Many athletes believe their abilities are fixed (based on the amount of talent with which they were born). This reflects a "fixed" mindset. We encourage you to take a growth mindset and approach ability with the belief that effort and hard work can increase your talent level. Carol Dweck, a Stanford University professor and a PCA National Advisory Board Member, conducted the research around fixed and growth mindsets that informs this excerpt.
Triple-Impact Competitors ® have a growth mindset, and we urge you to do the same. Set goals differently than most athletes, and focus on effort goals that you can achieve 100% of the time, if you put in the needed effort to get there. For example, try setting the effort goal of following through on every shot, and avoid the outcome goal of making every basket.
The second half of this excerpt includes an exercise for setting and accomplishing these effort goals. The framework here is designed to help you set goals and achieve them for the most success. The most important thing is to begin and not worry about doing everything right the first time. Commit to set goals, track your progress, and reevaluate if necessary. Give it a shot; your efforts will be rewarded!
This PDF was excerpted from Jim Thompson’s book Elevating Your Game. To purchase the entire book, and to learn more about other PCA books, click here.
These books are used in PCA’s live workshops. To learn more about our interactive student-athlete workshops, click here.