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Mental strength training is real. It’s a skill I adopted many years ago while training for the Olympics and I’ve utilized it in every aspect of my professional life as well. There are several brain exercises you can use to improve mental strength and they aren’t hard to learn! This is the perfect beginner’s guide for athletes and professionals. Train your brain to think differently with these easy steps:

1. Visualize Success

When I played softball in the Olympics, you better believe that before each game I had already visualized throwing strikes to every player. I had pitched 7 innings many times over in my head before even stepping onto the pitcher’s mound. Why? Because visualizing success is key to actual success. Your body and mind can prepare through mental imagery. It’s a secret many athletes use that can easily be replicated.

What do you need to visualize success for? A presentation? A race? A speaking engagement? Whatever it is, walk yourself through the whole experience from beginning to end. Picture yourself in what you plan to wear, what you plan to say and how you plan to succeed. This is a powerful tool that works every time. It’s also a great way to address your anxiety and fear in advance.

2. Meditation and Mindfulness
The Western world is just beginning to adopt meditation and mindfulness practices, but these have been around for thousands of years. Why? Because they work! Mindfulness helps control your brain and can also ease anxiety. It changes your brain’s response to stress and allows you to focus fully on the task at hand.

Don’t let meditation intimidate you. It takes time to develop any skill, so give it time and be patient. Do You Yoga offers some great tips for meditation, but remember that you will not be an expert the first time, or even the tenth time. Practice each day and it will 
become a learned habit.

3. Positive Self-Talk
One trait many athletes and successful professionals possess is mental toughness. But it isn’t a built-in ability. It comes from positive self-talk, repeated daily. It sounds easy, doesn’t it? But it is far from easy. If you were to write down every thought you had in one day, how many of those thoughts would be negative? Sometimes the way we talk to ourselves becomes such a habit that we don’t realize what we’re saying.

I encourage you to try journaling your thoughts for a day, or even a few hours. Write down every thought you have. Then start addressing those that aren’t positive.

Every thought affects the way we feel and behave. That is why positive self-talk is so important. 

If you want to train your brain to think differently, you need to start paying close attention to the unspoken attitude in your head. Becoming a winner in any aspect of your life is possible with the right training. If you’re interested in learning more about mental strength training or mindset coaching, please reach out to me on Facebook or send me an email at lisa@lisashawver.com