Some of you may not know I am a trained hypnotherapist! I studied this initially out of interest and to help others (I stopped a smoker of 30 years, smoking!). Whilst have grand delusions of becoming a female Derren Brown or modern day Jedi.. its dawned upon me that I don’t really take the advice that I freely give and support to others.
So, detaching from my ego… and treating myself as a client. Then what would I say to someone mentally struggling with running or training for a race… how could they access the negative wittering of the sub conscious mind and begin to perceive things differently.
Note: The subconscious is the protective, survivalist part of the mind. It makes your heart beat without you consciously thinking about it, it also learns patterns of behaviour to keep you safe, sometimes against the advice of your conscious, analytical mind.
For starters a trained hypnotherapist would walk you through these steps taking you into trance with certain methods, they would for example get you to walk down some stairs, relaxing even deeper with each step… by the end of this stage the client will be in a state of hypnosis, the sub conscious mind is receptive to new, positive information…
Just to advise, during trance a client can never be at the whim of the hypnotherapist, trance can be snapped out of by the client at any time, i.e. the spectacles you see on stage i.e. turning someone into a chicken is purely for entertainment, there is a certain amount of ego of the client or ‘performer’ than the skills of a hypnotherapist.
However for a simple guide on self hypnosis, why not try this out yourself…
Find yourself some quiet time where you will not be disturbed, play some relaxing music if you wish, and be comfortable.. close your eyes.
- Visualisation: See yourself preparing for your event, calmly laying out your kit so that you know you have everything ready, you’ve pinned your bib to your top and you feel excitement about the race. Feel the buzz before the race, other runners excitement, the music, the cheering and the sound of the horn as all the runners start. In your mind you’re running well, see it and feel it, how good this feels right now, you were meant to achieve this, you are meant to achieve everything you have set out about the race. Feel the atmosphere en route, your friends and family cheering you on the sidelines, the happiness and pride in their faces. You’re feeling so good right now that you have overtaken a few people, but this isn’t about them, you are exceeding all your expectations…but they were high anyway. Finally see yourself running through the finishing line ecstatic that you have performed well. See it so closely that you can actually taste success. The Law of Attraction that I bang on about all the time is at work here. Believe and you will achieve.
Other helpful tips;
- Re=framing the past: Had a bad race or run? then this is the opportunity now to re-frame how that experience played out, after all the event happened, its just your perception of what has happened that needs looking at – as we all know, we learn something from everything. For a bad race we could say ‘Next time, I will plan my nutrition/hydration better’, or ‘Next time, I will leave earlier to allow myself more time to relax before the race’. There is no bad run or bad race, there are positives from everything and they all count towards the bigger picture. Say a ‘bad run’ this week, could have actually strengthened my muscles more for the brilliant 9 mile run I did at the weekend, or showed me that I need to concentrate on my breathing and pace more.
- Be Yourself: The only good point to ‘comparison thinking’ is to motivate yourself to book your next race, and make it ABOUT YOU rather than trying to beat someone elses PB. If you are comparing yourself to another person then you will always fall short of your best as your focus has switched away from your own improvement. Be yourself always, good or bad days, we all have them, we ain’t perfect.. the universe wasn’t made that way anyway according to Stephen Hawking and he knows what he is talking about! So perfectionists out there (we know who we are), this is time to drop the ego and look at being kinder to ourselves.
I hope that helps in some small way if you’re struggling.. and remember the key to success always lie in the mind rather than anything physically, the biggest battle we will always have is with ourselves and the ego.
“One of the basic rules of the universe is that nothing is perfect. Perfection simply doesn’t exist…..Without imperfection, neither you nor I would exist”