If you want to achieve peak performance, experience being in the Zone, as well as experience daily joy and continuous improvements in your sport or athletic pursuit, this book is for you! Athlete's Way of Excellence is a revolutionary and holistic approach to sports performance and sports psychology based on 5000-year-old Chinese wisdom. Tobe Hanson's unique coaching style has been noted to be a cross between Tony Robbins and Eckhard Tolle, meaning: Performing ('Doing' the right thing at the right time) while 'Being' (Present at Peace in the Zone - the Way of Excellence). When the lessons in Athlete's Way of Excellence are applied diligently, you'll learn: • How to Be in the Zone. • How to Manage Your Mind. • How to Use Ancient Chinese Wisdom for Your Goal Setting. • How to Bring Peace to Any Stressful Moment. • How to Pursue Mastery in Your Sport. • How to Be the Best Athlete You Can Be. • And So Much More! Athlete's Way of Excellence was written for athletes, but the ancient principles of wisdom being taught in this book can be applied for mastery of a skill and excellence of all things in life. They can be applied to be in excellence as a husband, wife, parent, and friend as well as excellence in your profession, your career, your health, and your fitness. 'In the Way of Excellence, the true purpose is to have fun competing, to be challenged, grow and get better, to commit to a never ending pursuit of mastery in your athletic endeavor, to enjoy every step of your journey and to experience excellence.' Tobe Hanson
Spring - Commitment
In the spring, the farmer spreads manure, collected over the year from his livestock, onto his fields. He turns the soil over and then takes his
best seeds and plants them.
veryone has a God-given talent, whether you have realized yours or not. This gift is a seed with tremendous potential. What you do with this seed is your gift to the world. What are your goals, dreams, and desires? Do you have a plan? Do you know where you are going? If you don't know where you are going, then you are just aimlessly wandering around. The COMMITMENT phase is about planning and getting clear on purpose and direction. It is about finding a cause to commit to.
It's important to get clear on what YOU need, what DRIVES you, and what makes you tick. What makes us do the things we do? What drives us? Why do we even bother to get out of bed in the morning? Even if we don't realize it on a conscious level, we are driven by basic human needs. Many of us have been conditioned to believe that being needy or having needs is a negative thing. Yet every action we take and every word we speak is motivated by a need that we want met. Unmet needs can lead to distress, tension, failure, pain, suffering, injury, and over time even disease.
In addition to our needs, we have wants. People often confuse needs with wants. For instance, you may need a car for transportation, but you don't need a Ferrari. Unless you have enough wealth, buying a Ferrari may not bring you peace and satisfaction. What it could do is bring unintended consequences - going deep into debt, worrying about maintenance, being scared to drive it and have it scratched, nicked, damaged, or even stolen. This example could be the root of the famous proverb, "Be careful with what you ask for; you might get it." Think about it. How do you know that what you want is really what's best for you?
We also have GOALS and DREAMS. A goal is a plan of action for how we can achieve a need or want. A goal is something we believe we can accomplish. Many people are so bent on achieving their goals that they do not enjoy the journey. The journey (being in the moment), not the destination (reaching the goal), will bring you true peace and satisfaction. A dream has no limits, but there is a big difference between having dreams and being a dreamer. Dreams, creativity, and imagination set in motion have given the world some of its greatest athletic performances, discoveries, inventions, and other wonders. If you give up on a dream, a part of you will die.
Our Desires, needs, wants, goals and dreams are the fuel that keeps us going. This fuel is what makes us engage in life; it is what's alive in us. Our desires are the seeds we need to plant to grow, blossom, and bear fruit. Getting clear on your dreams, goals, and needs is getting clear on what you desire. The stronger the desire, the stronger the seed. Strong desire is what helps the seed grow through times of hardship.
What is the purpose of playing the game? In the Way of Excellence, the true purpose is to have fun competing, to be challenged and get better, to commit to mastery in your athletic endeavor, and to experience excellence. If your desire is strong enough, it can drive you in a lifetime commitment of striving for mastery of your skill or sport.
Decide on What to Plant
n accordance with the ancient teachings, the Way of Excellence is about committing to mastery of a cause. This cause could be committing to be the best athlete you can be, committing to master a skill or athletic activity, and realizing that this is a never-ending project.
In the West, we think of a goal as a linear approach and something to reach. Many people are so focused on reaching their goal that they make the present moment nothing more than a means to an end to reach a more important future moment, such as when they "cross the finish line" or reach their goal.
Goals are not always reached - or reached when we expect to reach them. Even if we do reach our goal, if we only live for that moment, we keep being disappointed because life moves on and that moment never lasts. A commitment is ongoing and cyclical, as long as we are still committed to our cause. Every morning is a new beginning to strive for excellence and mastery.
Get clear on and commit to what you desire to master. This desire is your "seed" that needs to be planted for your excellence, personal satisfaction and peace of mind. If you do not have a commitment or direction, your destination is left to chance instead of intent. Commit to mastery of a specific skill or sport that you desire. Commit to mastery of fitness. Commit to mastery of coaching. Commit to mastery of whatever skill or endeavor you can imagine. Sign a contract with yourself either on paper or in your mind to solidify your commitment.
Making this commitment = planting your seed.
Planting Daily Seeds
very morning is a new day. As you awake, ask yourself if you are still committed to your cause. Then set up goals, or things to do today that will help you grow closer to mastery. Ask "What can I do or visualize today to get closer to mastery of my commitment?" This could be something that takes minutes to hours of your day. It does not necessarily matter how much time you spend each day, as long as you are still committed and still challenge yourself.
There must be a balance between skill and challenge in your everyday goals. If the daily goals or challenges are frequently too high for your current skill, you will become stressed and discouraged. If your daily challenges are frequently too low for your current skill, then you will find yourself bored and lose interest. Try setting the bar at a height where you have a chance to make it, but do not set it so low that it is too easy. Commit to a daily challenge you believe you can reach and not some farfetched "pipe dream." As you, with time, master this process, you will grow in confidence and skill. As your skill grows, your challenge needs to rise. The bigger daily goals you reach, the more you believe in yourself and the greater daily challenges you can take on. A goal is a challenge for growth, a stepping stone and a learning experience. A commitment is a never-ending ongoing process, a lifestyle of excellence.
Every morning as you start your day, write down or mull over what you can do today (daily goal/challenge) to get a step closer to mastery.
Cleansing and Fertilization
very morning when you recommit to your cause for the new day, get clear on what has worked and what has not up to this point. Keep doing what brings improvement and growth, and change your approach in everything that does not bring improvement and growth.
Changing the approach is the same as making game plan adjustments in a football game when things are not going well. Everyone is still committed to winning the game but the plan on how to win is changing. Compare it to your car's GPS (navigation system). When you stray off the path or make a wrong turn the automated GPS voice tells you, "Rerouting your directions!" This is done to assure you get to your destination. To keep going when you can see that you are lost or that things are not working is a waste of time.
Diligently, every day and in every moment, get clear on your purpose, direction, the intent of every action you take, every word you speak, and every thought you think. Every moment is a new beginning, and your thoughts, words or actions are the "seeds" you later will harvest. Make sure all of your actions, words, and thoughts are in alignment with you being in excellence to achieve your daily goals and to get closer to mastery.
Each and every morning we wake to a new day, and every morning we need to get clear and decide if we are still committed to our cause. If we are, then we keep doing and perfecting what works, and we change our game plan when it doesn't.
If one morning we wake up and we are not 100% committed, then we need to cleanse our thinking and change our attitude or we need to commit to something else. Continuing to do something without being fully committed is fruitless.
Before you start - every day, every workout, every repetition, every competition - get clear on what you need to do, how you need to be (your attitude and presence), what you need to say and what you need to think to be
aligned with getting closer to reaching your daily goals and mastery of your skill or sport.
Aim to make every day, every workout and every effort greater than the previous day. This is how you get better and multiply your "seed" for continued growth and greater harvests.
Get clear on what works - that is, what brings improvement and growth - and what does not. Change what you do when it does not show improvement, and keep doing what brings improvement so that every day you get more efficient to operate in growth and excellence. This might sound obvious, but it...